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Drugs Offences

We deal with people facing drugs charges on a regular basis and are highly experienced in defending this type of case.

If you are arrested you should ask for a Solicitor at the earliest opportunity. We recommend that you say nothing to the Police until you have spoken directly with us. Our 24 hour number is 07850 012 366.

Advice at a Police Station is always free of charge and will be paid for by Legal Aid. This does not depend on your financial circumstances.

This page sets out a basic outline of the classification of drugs offences and the penalties if convicted of them. Please contact us if you require legal advice or representation.

What are the classifications of drugs in the UK?

Drugs are grouped into three separate categories, as follows:

Class A Drugs

  • Heroin
  • Cocaine
  • Crack Cocaine
  • Ecstasy
  • LSD
  • Magic Mushrooms
  • Amphetamines (if prepared for Injection)

Class B Drugs

  • Amphetamines
  • Cannabis

Class C Drugs

  • Tranquilisers
  • Ketamine
  • Diazepam (unless prescribed by a Doctor)

What is the Law relating to drugs offences in the UK?

Drugs offences are categorised as follows:

  1. Possession of a controlled substance unlawfully.
  2. Possession of a controlled substance with intent to supply it.
  3. Supplying or offering to supply a controlled drug (even where no charge is made for the drug)
  4. Allowing premises you occupy or manage to be used unlawfully for the purpose of producing or supplying controlled drugs

If you arrested and tested for Drugs

You may be tested for drugs if you've been arrested for a trigger offence such as supplying drugs, street robbery, burglary, car theft or handling stolen goods.

You may then be arrested and taken to a Police station where you can be tested to find out if you've taken any Class A drugs.

You cannot be forced to provide a sample for testing. However, it is an offence to refuse to provide a sample without good cause.

If you are arrested you should ask for a Solicitor at the earliest opportunity. We recommend that you say nothing to the Police until you have spoken directly with us. Our 24 hour number is 07850 012 366.

What are the penalties for Supply or Possession of drugs?

The penalty for supply or possession of a drug relates to what classification that drug has been given.

Supply or Possession of Class A drugs

Penalties for possession: Up to 7 years in prison or an unlimited fine, or both
Penalties for supply (dealing): Up to life in prison or an unlimited fine, or both

Supply or Possession of Class B drugs

Penalties for possession: Up to 5 years in prison or an unlimited fine, or both
Penalties for supply (dealing): Up to 14 years in prison or an unlimited fine, or both

Supply or Possession of Class C drugs

Penalties for possession: Up to 2 years in prison or an unlimited fine, or both
Penalties for supply (dealing): Up to 14 years in prison or an unlimited fine, or both.

The Police have special powers to stop, detain and search people on ‘reasonable suspicion’ that they are in possession of a controlled drug.

The penalties stated above are given in a Crown Court. In a Magistrates Court, where less serious offences are dealt with, the maximum sentence is 6 months imprisonment and a £5000 fine. The actual sentence you're likely to get will also depend on a number of factors, including:

  • Any previous criminal record;
  • The drug involved;
  • Your personal circumstances

Drug trafficking (supply) attracts serious punishment including life imprisonment for Class A offences.

Cultivation of Cannabis

A separate offence exists specifically for Cannabis production known as ‘Cultivation of Cannabis’. It is an offence for anyone to grow any form of Cannabis plant, unless they have a license for Industrial production. Cultivation of Cannabis carries a sentence of up to 14 years imprisonment or an unlimited fine, or both.

Producing Drugs

Producing Drugs means being involved in manufacturing drugs, often in large quantities and sometimes for sale.  This offence carries the following penalties:

Class A Drugs – Up to life imprisonment or an unlimited fine, or both.

Class B Drugs – Up to 14 years imprisonment or an unlimited fine, or both

Class C Drugs – Up to 14 years imprisonment or an unlimited fine, or both

Allowing Premises to be used for the Use, Supply or Production of Drugs

It is an Offence to allow premises to be used for the Use, Supply or Production of Drugs. You are guilty of an offence if you knowingly permit any of the aforementioned activities to take place on premises owned by you or under your control.

Importing Drugs

It is an offence to import Drugs into the Country. This offence carries the following sentences:

Importing Class A Drugs can be tried in either the Crown Court or the Magistrates Court and carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. This would be reserved for the most serious of offences.

Importing Amphetamine can be tried in either the Crown Court or the Magistrates Court and carries a maximum penalty at 14 years imprisonment.

Importing Cannabis can be tried in either the Crown Court or the Magistrates Court and carries a maximum penalty of 14 years imprisonment.

Please contact us if you require legal advice or representation for any drugs related offence.

Contact Us

Telephone:

01293 776 916

24 Hour Emergency phone:

07850 012 366

Email:

criminal@geoffwhitesolicitors.co.uk

Address:

83 Victoria Road
Horley
Surrey
RH6 7QH