Last week we were able to get a client's charge of Manufacturing a Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS) dismissed.
Manufacturing a Controlled Dangerous Substance is a very serious charge which carries with it an harsh punishment range as well. The statute that describes the crime explains that "it shall be unlawful for any person to manufacture or attempt to manufacture any controlled dangerous substance or possess any substance listed in Section 2-322 of this title or any substance containing any detectable amount of pseudoephedrine or its salts, optical isomers or salts of optical isomers, iodine or its salts, optical isomers or salts of optical isomers, hydriodic acid, sodium metal, lithium metal, anhydrous ammonia, phosphorus, or organic solvents with the intent to use that substance to manufacture a controlled dangerous substance."
Anyone charges with Manufacturing a CDS or attempting to unlawfully manufacture any controlled dangerous substance faces a felony and can be punished by imprisonment in the Oklahoma Penitentiary for a minimum of seven (7) years to a maximum of life in prison. Moreover, a conviction for manufacturing CDS also carries a fine of not less than $50,000.00 in addition to any other punishment. To make negotiations even difficult in these case, the statute does not allow for the fine to be substituted in lieu of the mandatory minimum sentence of at least seven (7) years incarceration.
Like many other Oklahoma drug crimes, the punishment for a manufacturing case increases exponentially depending on the amount of CDS that is manufactured or attempted. If the amount is large enough, one will be charged with aggravated manufacturing in CDS, and the the punishment range rises to a minimum of twenty (20) years incarceration to a maximum of life, along with the above-mentioned $50,000.00 fine. To make matters even more serious, aggravated manufacturing is also considered an 85% crime, which means the convict will have to serve at least 85% of the total sentence prior to becoming eligible for earned good-time credits or parole considerations.
Most often, the presence of a minor will increase the punishment range associated with a drug crime in Oklahoma. Oddly enough though, with manufacturing charges, it can actually be argued that the punishment range decreases when children are present! According to section 852.1 of Title 21 of the Oklahoma Statutes, knowingly permitting a child to be present at a location where a controlled dangerous substance is being manufactured or attempted to be manufactured is actually classified as child endangerment, and the punishment range one would face in that situation is only a maximum of four (4) years in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000.00. That's right, manufacturing a CDS in the presence of a minor carries a maximum prison sentence that is less than the mandatory minimum sentence one would face if the same manufacturing occurred without the child present!
Regardless, as with most drug crimes in Oklahoma, one can expect punishment range enhancements and additional limitations on earned credits and sentence reductions if the manufacturing occurs with the aid of a minor or within 2,000 feet of the real property comprising a public or private elementary or secondary school, public vocational school, public or private college or university, or other institution of higher education, recreation center or public park, including state parks and recreation areas, public housing project, or child care facility.
Consequently it was extremely important that we get these charges dismissed for our client. A careful review of the facts, along with many persuasive discussions with the prosecution, allowed our attorneys to explain the utter impossibility that our client could have been manufacturing a controlled dangerous substance simply based on the evidence available to the district attorney's office. Thankfully, the prosecutor in this case was a seasoned attorney who knew that moving forward with the allegations would be not only a waste of everyone's time, but also meritless based on the information available.
If you or a loved one has been arrested on suspicion of manufacturing, or endeavoring to manufacture, a controlled dangerous substance in Oklahoma, you need a law firm that has experience with these types of charges. You need an attorney that knows how to get a case dismissed or at least work out the best possible outcome for your situation. Contact the Law Offices of Adam R. Banner, P.C. at (405) 778-4800 to speak with a lawyer who can help protect your rights and reclaim your good name.