Over Two Decades Of Experience.
Thousands Of Successful Resolutions.

The legality of possessing fentanyl-laced marijuana

On Behalf of | May 3, 2024 | Drug Charges

Despite recent changes to drug laws, fentanyl is still illegal in Ohio. State laws classify it as a Schedule II controlled substance under the Controlled Substances Act, meaning it has a high potential for abuse and can lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.

Most casual marijuana users would never intentionally buy a synthetic drug such as fentanyl. However, they can still face criminal charges if they unknowingly have marijuana laced with it.

Dangers of fentanyl

As a synthetic opioid, fentanyl is significantly more potent than other opioids such as heroin and morphine. Even small amounts of fentanyl can cause overdose and death. The illegal production, distribution and use of fentanyl contribute to the opioid epidemic, which has had devastating effects on communities across the country.

Fentanyl-laced marijuana

According to some experts, the likelihood of a drug dealer applying fentanyl to marijuana before selling it is unlikely. The chemical structure of fentanyl is such that it loses its effects when burned, so it would serve no purpose in marijuana intended for smoking. However, it would be possible for someone to accidentally contaminate marijuana buds with fentanyl or other substances.

Fentanyl-laced THC cartridges

Fentanyl maintains its effectiveness when inhaled through a vape pen, and adding fentanyl to vape liquids is becoming a common occurrence among dealers. Thus, THC cartridge users can have fentanyl in their possession without knowing it.

Charges for fentanyl possession

Possessing up to 5 grams of fentanyl can be a fourth- or fifth-degree felony with penalties of up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. These penalties can be more for individuals with prior drug convictions. Ohio also has laws that allow for the possibility of treatment or diversion programs for individuals facing drug charges, especially for first-time offenders.

If you can prove you were unaware that someone laced your marijuana with fentanyl and that you did not intend to possess or use the drug, you may have a legal defense. However, this situation can be difficult to prove.