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Drug distribution to people under 18 in Washington


In Washington State, many different substances fall under the category of "controlled substances" per state law. It may be illegal to produce, sell, buy, manufacture or ingest these controlled substances. If a resident does any of the above, they may be looking at drug charges, time behind bars, stiff fines and other various penalties.

The penalties for drug offenses vary in Washington. Sometimes, a drug diversion program may be available to someone charged with a relatively minor drug offense. In any event, a person charged with a drug crime will likely want an experienced lawyer by their side as they face prosecution. One of the many drug-related offenses that a Spokane resident could be prosecuted for is drug distribution to people under the age of 18.

Drug distribution is generally a crime regardless of who is receiving the drug. However, Washington code section 69.50.406 stipulates that distribution of a Schedule I or Schedule II narcotic or methamphetamine controlled substance to someone under the age of 18 is a class A felony. Moreover, according to RCW 69.50.406, this particular felony is punishable by a fine, imprisonment or both. Since a class A felony carries such serious consequences in this state, it may be beneficial to seek out legal advice quickly after an arrest.

The potential consequences of violating RCW 69.50.406 still loom even if the drug in question is a salt, isomer, or salt of isomer of a methamphetamine; the same is true of a flunitrazepam. A person who distributes drugs listed in Schedules I through V to someone under age 18, and the receiving person is at least 3 years the junior of the distributor, faces a class B felony charge, also punishable by fine or imprisonment.

Those who have been charged with violating RCW 69.50.406 may be concerned about what the future will bring, and rightly so. Prosecutors will go to all lengths necessary to convict those they believe committed drug offenses. Therefore, those who are facing drug charges should prepare a solid defense strategy. An attorney can assist in this matter.

Source: Washington State Legislature, "Distribution to Persons Under Age 18," accessed Jan. 2, 2017

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