The limited use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by those aged 21 and over is not illegal anymore in Arizona. It was in November 2020, that a voter initiative known as Proposition 207 or the Smart & Safe Arizona Act made this change to earlier the laws. It is the same proposition that allowed the expunging of certain marijuana related offenses.
However, when the quantity of marijuana is above the amounts that are approved by this law, criminal charges and penalties are still in place. This blog post will summarize the various penalties that are associated with the sale and possession of Marijuana in Arizona.
Penalties for possession and sale of marijuana
Per current marijuana laws in the Arizona, there are no penalties for possession of up to 1 ounce of marijuana. When the amount is between 1 ounce and 2.5 ounces, it is considered a petty offense and attracts a fine of up to $300. However, any amount in excess of 2.5 ounces will directly attract felony charges. The penalties for that are as follows:
- 5 ounces to 2 pounds: 6–18 months imprisonment and fines up to $150,000.
- 2 pounds to 4 pounds: 9–24 months imprisonment and fines up to $150,000.
- More than 4 pounds: 18–36 months imprisonment and fines up to $150,000.
Similarly, for sale (transfer) of marijuana up to 1 ounce, there is no penalty. However, for any amount in excess of that will attract felony charges. The penalties are as follows:
- 1 ounce to 2 pounds: 18–36 months imprisonment and fines up to $150,000.
- 2 pounds to 4 pounds: 30–84 months imprisonment and fines up to $150,000.
- More than 4 pounds: 48–120 months imprisonment and fines up to $150,000.
Defending against marijuana charges in Arizona
While the limited use, cultivation and transfer of marijuana is not illegal anymore, large-scale sale, possession, cultivation and trafficking remain a serious offense. Therefore, when someone is charged for marijuana-related offense, the wisest decision would be to seek the advice of a criminal defense attorney at the earliest opportunity. The timely legal aid can make sure that the rights of the accused are protected right from the beginning.