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Facing Criminal Marijuana Charges? Get State Bar Certified Criminal Law Specialist David D. Diamond On Your Side

Penalties for Marijuana Crimes in Los Angeles, CA

Los Angeles Marijuana Attorney

In California, the penalties for crimes involving marijuana are as follows:


  • 28. 5 grams or less (misdemeanor): $100 fine
  • 28.5 grams or more (misdemeanor): up to 6 months in jail and a $500 fine
  • 28.5 grams or less on school grounds while the school is open (misdemeanor): up to 10 days in jail and a $500 fine
  • 28.5 grams or more on school grounds while the school is open (misdemeanor): up to 6 months in jail and a $500 fine
  • Paraphernalia: a civil fine of $200-$300 for a first offense, and up to $5,000-$6,000 for a fifth or subsequent violation within five years


  • Any amount (felony): 16-36 months in prison


  • Gift of less than 28.5 g (misdemeanor): $100 fine
  • Any amount by an adult (felony): 2-4 years in prison
  • 28.5 grams or less by a minor (misdemeanor): $250 fine
  • Selling any amount to a minor over 14 (felony): 3-5 years in prison
  • Selling any amount to minor under 14, this includes offering, inducing, distributing, or employing (felony): 3-7 years in prison


  • Any minor under the age of 21 who is convicted of a marijuana crime will face a 1 year driver’s license suspension

Medical Marijuana

  • Under Proposition 215 and Senate Bill 420, Californians suffering from a serious or painful medical illness or condition (and their caretakers) can possess or cultivate marijuana without fear of criminal prosecution or penalties at the state level, as long as they have a valid prescription from a licensed medical physician.

Alternative Sentencing

In some drug crime cases, especially those involving first or second time offenders or misdemeanor charges, the defense attorney can negotiate for an alternative sentence instead of jail. The purpose of an alternative sentence is to avoid incarceration and get drug offenders the counseling they need so they will be less likely to commit another drug crime in the future. Two of the most common alternative sentencing programs are:

Proposition 36 (Substance Abuse and Crime Prevention Act): first and second time non-violent drug offenders can receive substance abuse counseling and treatment instead of jail. Treatment includes drug replacement therapy, education classes, treatment, and aftercare treatment. If the program is completed successfully, the defendant’s arrest and conviction will be removed from his or her record.

Drug Diversion: The defendant pleads guilty (but is not convicted), and agrees to take drug education classes for 6 months. The defendant must also not get arrested or charged with another crime during the time he or she is taking the classes. After 18 months the case will be dismissed and no conviction will appear on the defendant’s record.

Contact a Los Angeles Marijuana Lawyer

If you have been charged with a marijuana crime, the best way to protect your rights and avoid these penalties is by contacting Los Angeles marijuana defense attorney David D. Diamond right away. You can rely on Mr. Diamond to provide you with the aggressive and committed defense representation you need to fight your charges and overcome a conviction!

Contact Los Angeles marijuana charge lawyer David D. Diamond today!
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