It is illegal to so much as possess certain substances under New Hampshire state law. Prohibited drugs include methamphetamine and heroin. Drugs that have no known medical use and a high risk of abuse or addiction are against the law to possess or distribute to others. The state can also prosecute people who unlawfully possess controlled substances, like prescription pain medication.
Details about an individual and the circumstances of their arrest may influence the exact allegations brought against someone accused of violating drug statutes in New Hampshire. Possession charges are the least serious, but people may also find themselves accused of trafficking drugs or possessing drugs with the intent to traffic them under certain possession-related circumstances. The following factors increase the likelihood of trafficking or intent to distribute charges in New Hampshire.
The drugs found by the police
The specific substances that officers find in someone’s possession could have a profound impact on the charges the state pursues and the penalties an individual faces. Certain factors increase the likelihood of more significant charges. For example, if police officers find a variety of different drugs in an individual’s possession, they may assume that the intent was to sell them to others rather than to use them all personally. The weight of the drugs could also play a role, as larger amounts may not seem like drugs intended for personal use.
The criminal and social history of the defendant
If someone has prior drug charges related to distribution, that may increase the likelihood of the state pursuing similar charges after a subsequent arrest. Additionally, those who regularly socialize with people involved in the local drug trade or have a large number of people in and out of their homes may look like drug dealers to law enforcement professionals even if there is an innocent explanation for their actions.
The presence of paraphernalia
Most people who use drugs have some amount of paraphernalia in their possession. Tools for storing, consuming and weighing drugs are common, but they may also make officers suspect that someone intends to repackage the drugs or facilitate others using them.
Frequently, it will be circumstantial evidence or assumptions rather than hard proof that leads to an allegation of trafficking or an intent to distribute drugs in New Hampshire. Reviewing the evidence the state has can with an experienced criminal defense attorney can be a good starting point for those who want to defend against such charges.