Marijuana distribution or possession with intent to distribute is a felony in Colorado, punishable by a potential sentence to prison. Following is an outline of the marijuana distribution laws since the enactments of Amendment 64 in 2012 and Senate Bill 250 in 2013.
The “transfer” or “dispensing” of less than two ounces of marijuana, without receiving anything of value in return, is a petty offense. Any other transfer, sale, manufacture or cultivation is punished as either a drug misdemeanor or a drug felony, with the particular class of the offense depending on the amount of marijuana involved. Distribution of four ounces or less is a class 1 drug misdemeanor, which can carry a jail sentence of up to eighteen months. Distribution of more than four ounces, but no more than twelve ounces, is a class 4 drug felony, punishable by up to two years in prison, whereas distribution of up to five pounds is a class 3 drug felony, up to 50 pounds is a class 2 drug felony, and more than 50 pounds is a class 1 drug felony that carries a mandatory minimum sentence of eight years and potentially a prison sentence of up to 32 years. These provisions also apply to anyone involved in any attempt or conspiracy to commit the offense. In addition, the prosecution may “aggregate” the amounts of separate sales occurring within a six-month period in order to elevate the level of the offense.
Enhanced penalties also apply in the case of any sale or transfer of marijuana by any person of eighteen years or older to a minor if the seller is more than two years older than the minor. For example, if you are eighteen or older and you supply any person under the age of sixteen with any amount of marijuana, regardless of whether you receive anything of value in return, you have committed a drug felony and will be exposed to two years in prison. Penalties increase drastically depending upon the amount involved, such that a distribution of more than two and a half pounds of marijuana to a minor can expose you to a 32 year prison sentence.
If you have been charged with marijuana possession or distribution, contact an experienced Denver criminal defense attorney from our firm today to discuss you legal options and potential defenses.