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Virginia's drug courts handle cocaine cases

Virginia has specific laws pertaining to the use and distribution of cocaine, a Schedule II drug. This illegal drug may not be purchased or distributed in the state. If you possess it, you can face up to a year in jail and a financial penalty of $2,500. If you sell it, the penalty could include a sentence as long as life in prison.

Thankfully, Virginia does recognize the importance of alternatives to prison for drug offenders. As such, there are drug treatment courts that help nonviolent drug offenders obtain probation while seeking addiction treatment. Those who participate in the program must be monitored by probation officers, but even if there is a relapse, that doesn't necessarily mean probation has been violated. The goal is to help individuals get back on their feet and to live a drug-free lifestyle instead of placing them in prison where they are taken out of society without treatment.

Possessing any amount of cocaine is a Class 5 felony, and you can go to jail for up to 12 months. If you face this charge, consider speaking to your attorney about alternatives. It's possible to fight for your innocence, but it's also a good idea to understand the alternative sentences that may be open to you. In some cases, taking an alternative sentence could help you get much-needed medical care.

Felony crimes don't always have to end with you in prison. In cases involving drugs, know your rights and options before you decide how to plead. With your attorney's help, you can find the right path forward for you.

Source: FindLaw, "Virginia Cocaine Laws," accessed Nov. 23, 2017

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