California’s Law on Illegal Drug Distribution

California’s Law on Illegal Drug Distribution

Sec 11012 of the Health and Safety Code of California defines distribution as the means of delivering narcotic drugs other than by administering or dispensing a controlled substance.

In layman’s terms, distribution involves the physical transfer of drugs from one individual to another or one location to another. The most common manner of drug distribution nowadays is through couriers or “mules”.

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This is done through the concealment of drugs within packages or within their person in order to transfer the location of drugs from one place to another.

The following are the elements of the crime of illegal drug distribution:

Control over the substance

This means that the accused had control, either personally or constructively over the drugs being distributed. Mere presence is not sufficient as there is need to be proof of dominion over the drugs when the bust was made.

Volume of the Substance

The volume of the drugs found must be in a quantity usable for sale or consumption. If only residue was found, there can be no crime. The drugs must be in usable form in order to fall within the crime itself.

Specific Intent

This can be deduced from the circumstances of the case. If the drugs were in small packages, then there is intent to sell and distribute the illegal drugs.

Knowledge of the Drug

The person must have specific and direct knowledge of the presence and the activity to be undertaken. There must be knowledge of the illegality of the substances and the plans for the drugs in its distribution.

Drug distribution is a serious offense in California. Should you be or know anyone facing illegal drugs distribution charges, do reach out to the lawyers at for a free consultation today.

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