A controlled substance is any Schedule I through Schedule VI drug as listed in the Virginia Drug Control Act. Possessing these substances can lead to a criminal charge. If you are accused of possessing drugs, it's a good idea to build a defense immediately to protect your reputation and rights.
Each drug schedule has a different meaning that you should understand, because the schedule a drug falls under can determine the kinds of penalties you face. For example, Schedule I drugs have a high potential for abuse and no medically acceptable purpose. If you are in possession of one of these drugs, you may face harsher penalties than if you have a Schedule VI drug in your possession. Why is a Schedule VI drug so different? It includes "drugs" like aerosol cans and glue, which are available to purchase legally when you're over a certain age.
There are three kinds of drug crimes you can face in Virginia including possession, sale and distribution and manufacturing. Selling or manufacturing drugs tends to lead to harsher penalties than if you possess drugs, unless they are of a significant weight or volume. For example, if you possess a Schedule I or II drug you face up to 10 years in prison and a Class 5 felony. On the other hand, if you intend to sell a Schedule I or II drug, you face imprisonment for up to 40 years.
That difference is important, because those in possession of drugs may be accused of trying to sell them. You need to defend yourself, because the level of criminal charges you face do determine the penalties you may receive.
Source: Virginia.gov, "Drugs - Overview," accessed July 07, 2017