Cocaine Possession Laws and Penalties in Utah

About cocaine and other schedule II controlled substances

Cocaine is classified as a schedule II controlled substance. The common characteristics among schedule II drugs are that they all have a strong potential for abuse, some have accepted medical uses with severe restrictions, and they all have a strong potential for psychological and/or physical addiction when abused. Included in this category are the following substances often present in drug crimes:

  • Cocaine in all forms, including coca leaves and crack
  • Methamphetamine
  • Morphine
  • Methadone
  • Opium and opium oil/tincture
  • Prescription opiates such as OxyContin, Percocet, Demerol and Codeine
  • Prescription stimulants such as Adderall, Ritalin, Concerta and Focalin

Under Utah cocaine possession laws, holding or distributing cocaine or another schedule II controlled substance is a felony offense in which an individual can be sentenced to serve time at the Utah State prison.

Types of charges

As with marijuana, the following activities are punishable offenses when involving cocaine (in any of its iterations):

  • Possession – carrying any amount of cocaine for personal use
  • Possession of cocaine paraphernalia
  • Possession with intent to deliver
  • Distribution, sale or delivery of cocaine or paraphernalia
  • Cultivation – growing and/or harvesting coca leaves
  • Trafficking – importing into or exporting out of the state

Factors that affect your case

In Utah, cocaine distribution penalties are significantly more severe than those for mere possession. Other factors that can upgrade or affect your cocaine possession charges include the following:

  • The amount of cocaine in your possession
  • Whether any minors were at all involved or present
  • Whether the crime occurred in a drug-free zone such as a school, church or library
  • Whether an accident that occurred as a result of the cocaine crime left another person injured or killed
  • Your own history of criminal drug activity and number of offenses

Minimum and maximum cocaine possession penalties in Utah

Conviction of a third-degree felony drug offense can get you up to five years in prison and up $5,000 in fines, plus a 90% surcharge and other additional fees. If the charge is upgraded to a second-degree felony, the prison sentence increases to one to 15 years and fines can go up to $10,000, plus a 90% surcharge and other additional fees. If the charge is upgraded to a first-degree felony, the minimum prison sentence is five years, and the maximum is life. Other requirements that may be part of your cocaine possession or distribution penalties include the following:

  • Completion of mandatory periodic drug screening
  • Completion of a mandatory intensive treatment program with inpatient and aftercare
  • Suspension or revocation of your driver’s license

Don’t gamble with your future. Talk to a lawyer if you’ve been charged with a cocaine offense.

An experienced criminal defense attorney in Salt Lake City from Larsen, Larsen, Nash & Larsen can help you manage your drug charge and achieve the best outcome possible. For more information or to schedule a free consultation, call the firm today at 801-758-8728 or contact us online. Conveniently located in West Valley City, we represent clients throughout Salt Lake County and the surrounding areas of northern Utah, including Summit County and Davis County, Provo, Ogden and Park City.