The categories and schedules for controlled dangerous substances are regulated by the Controlled Substances Act under the DEA. The Controlled Substances Act divides the penalties into schedules. The penalties for the purchase, possession, manufacture, distribution, or sale of controlled substances or marijuana in Georgia are found in O.C.G.A. § 16-13-30.

The different categories of controlled dangerous substances in Georgia describes the level of addiction and dangers with the drug. Further, the potential for psychological dependence factors into the categorization of controlled dangerous substances. It is governed by the Controlled Substances Act.

If you have been charged with a crime in relation to a controlled dangerous substance, it is important that you contact an attorney as soon as possible to begin crafting a case to help reduce or dismiss any penalties associated with your charge.

Drug Schedules

There are different degrees of abuse of Controlled Dangerous Substances in Georgia. Some people abuse drugs daily, while others use them less frequently. There are many categories of controlled dangerous substances in Georgia, and it is important for an individual to understand them in the scope of their case.

Schedule I

The DEA has five drug classifications. Schedule I drugs are controlled substances or drugs that have no currently acceptable or accepted medical use and have a high potential for abuse and dependency. Heroin, PCP, LSD, and ecstasy are examples of drugs within the Schedule I drug category.

Schedule II

Schedule II drugs are controlled substances considered dangerous drugs with a high potential for abuse and dependency. These are also drugs that have acceptable medical uses, but are dangerous drugs due to their addictive properties and potency.

The examples of Schedule II drugs in Georgia are Dilaudid, Demerol, OxyContin and oxycodone, Vicodin, Fentanyl, Ritalin, and Adderall, which are ADD drugs and also stimulants.

Schedule III

Schedule III drugs and controlled substances are drugs with an acceptable medical use and with a low to moderate potential for dependency or abuse.

Steroids and antidiuretics are Schedule III drugs. Acetaminophen with codeine, cough medicines with codeine, Dronabinol, and Ketamine are examples of Schedule III drugs.

Schedule IV

Schedule IV drugs in Georgia are controlled substances or drugs with an acceptable medical use and a low risk for potential abuse or dependency.

Examples of common Schedule IV drugs are Xanax, Soma, Darvocet, Valium, Ativan, Zolpidem which is Ambien, and Tramadol which is a muscle relaxer.

Potential Penalties

Previously, there were certain mandatory minimum requirements for jail time for someone that was charged with drug trafficking. When someone is charged with these types of offenses based on the quantity, there are certain mandatory minimums. However, when the individual provides substantial assistance to the police or law enforcement, the judge has the ability to differ or give less than mandatory minimums under the law, with the agreement of the state.

Even when the statute requires 10 years in prison, there are certain situations where someone who provides certain assistance or the ability to capture or nab other drug offenders or sellers, may be able to get lesser than the mandatory minimum.

Bringing Forward the Charge

Most illegal drugs are found when someone encounters a police officer. Many times, an individual can be pulled over in a traffic stop where the police smell the odor of a drug such as marijuana coming from their vehicle. Someone could be high, acting erratically, and intoxicated, so the police will charge them with driving under the influence once arrested. The police officer then has an opportunity to search that person’s car.

Benefits of a Lawyer

A lawyer determines if the search was done in a lawful fashion and whether there is a defense such as equal access, which means the state cannot prove ownership of the drugs, and more than one person had access to the drugs.

The lawyer can determine if the police lawfully found drugs in the first place. They can listen to the wiretaps and establish how the police gathered and found the drugs. An experienced attorney can help an individual in determining the specific category their controlled dangerous substance falls under, and begin mounting a strong legal defense to help minimize any potential consequences the individual may be facing.