FAQs About Brampton Drug Offences

Drug Schedules

What Are They?

The word “schedules” in this context refers to lists that classify drugs that are governed by this piece of law. Schedule I lists the drugs that are the most dangerous and carry the most serious punishments.

You can find the Schedules here. Schedules II, III, IV, and V list less dangerous drugs and their punishments.

“Possession”

What Does It Mean?

4 (1) Except as authorized under the regulations, no person shall possess a substance included in Schedule I, II or III.

For the Crown to prove the offence of possession, the following elements are needed:

  • Knowledge – this refers to proof that you knew the substance in your possession was listed in the CDSA
  • Control – this refers to proof that you had control over the substance

The range of punishment depends on the Schedule that the substance is listed on. For a Schedule I drug, the punishment ranges from 6 months in jail to a maximum of 7 years. For a Schedule II drug, the punishment ranges from 6 months in jail to a maximum of 5 years minus a day. For a Schedule III drug, the punishment ranges from 6 months in jail to a maximum of 3 years.

You should also be aware that there is the possibility of a monetary fine for a drug on any of the Schedules. The maximum is $1,000.

“Possession For The Purpose Of Trafficking / Trafficking”

What Does It Mean?

5 (1) No person shall traffic in a substance included in Schedule I, II, III, IV or V or in any substance represented or held out by that person to be such a substance.

(2) No person shall, for the purpose of trafficking, possess a substance included in Schedule I, II, III, IV or V.

For the Crown to prove trafficking, there should be proof that you gave or delivered a substance to another person. There is no requirement to show that money was exchanged between you and the other person.

For the Crown to prove possession for the purpose of trafficking, there should be proof that you possessed a controlled substance and had the intent to provide it to others. There should be proof of actual knowledge of the substance.

The maximum punishment for trafficking a Schedule I or II drug is life imprisonment. The range of punishment for a Schedule III or IV drug is between 18 months to a maximum of 10 years. The range of punishment for a Schedule V drug is between 1 year to a maximum of 3 years.

Mandatory Minimum Sentences In A Drug Offence

What Are They?

Mandatory minimum sentences are the sentences that a judge may be required to give you. The term of the sentences depends on the Crown proving any number of factors which can include any use of violence, earlier findings of guilt, any connections with a criminal organization, etc.

How Can Our Brampton Defence Lawyers Assist You?

Drug-related offences is a technical area of law that requires hiring a lawyer with experience and knowledge of the processes, options, and risks you face. We can help to explain what the technical details are, the best options to fight the legality of a search, what it means to fight the charges in a trial, and what it means to plead guilty.

Before making any final decision, please call our office and speak to us for a confidential consultation before deciding on a course of action.

We Value The Trust That Our Clients Place With Us

Ontario Drug Offences Law FAQs

The penalties for drug offences in Ontario vary depending on the type of offence, the amount of the drug involved, and the offender's criminal record. Trafficking a large amount of cocaine is an indictable offence, which means that the maximum penalty is life in prison.

There are a number of defences that may be available to someone who is charged with a drug offence. Some common defences include:

  • Lack of knowledge or intent: The accused did not know that they had the drug in their possession, or they did not intend to possess the drug.
  • Entrapment: The accused was tricked or coerced into possessing the drug.
  • Involuntary intoxication: The accused was involuntarily intoxicated and did not have the capacity to form the necessary intent to commit the offence.

If you are under arrest for a drug offence, you have a number of rights, including:

  • The right to remain silent.
  • The right to speak to a lawyer.
  • The right to have a bail hearing.
  • The right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

It is always advisable to have a lawyer if you are charged with a drug offence. A lawyer can help you understand the charges against you, protect your rights, and negotiate a plea deal or fight the case, and defend you at trial. Search warrants can be challenged, and counsel can apply to have evidence excluded.

The criminal trial process for a drug offence can be complex and time-consuming. The trial will typically involve the following steps:

  • The Crown will call its case against you, including evidence from Police witnesses and sometimes expert witnesses.
  • Your lawyer can challenge the search warrant, or the warrantless search of your car, person or home. This is called a Charter application.
  • Your lawyer can argue your rights to counsel were infringed, if applicable.
  • Your lawyer can call a Defence.
  • The judge will then decide the merits of the Charter application and the strength of the Crown’s case, and decide whether you are guilty or not guilty.
  • Sometimes you have the right to have a trial in Superior Court depending on the nature of the charge. You may choose to be tried before a court composed of a single judge and a jury.

There are diversion programs available that MAY be available for people who are charged with simple possession offences. We recommend you hire a lawyer to negotiate with the Federal Crown and seek diversion on your behalf. These programs can help you avoid a criminal record, and get the help you need to address your drug addiction. Some common diversion programs include:

  • Formal or Informal Diversion: this means that your charges are dropped after you have taken steps required by the Federal Crown.
  • Drug treatment court: This program provides you with the opportunity to receive treatment for your drug addiction while avoiding a criminal record. It is a lengthy process, but upon successful completion you can avoid the consequences a record carries and avoid jail time.

There are a number of resources available to help you get help with drug addiction. Some common resources include:

  • Your doctor: Your doctor can provide you with information about treatment options and refer you to a treatment program.
  • The Canadian Centre for Substance Abuse: This organization provides information about drug addiction and treatment options.

Discuss Your Case In Confidence

Our Brampton office is conveniently located beside the Criminal/Family Courthouse at 7755 Hurontario Street West, Brampton, Ontario. It is steps from the Peel Regional Police station where clients have to attend for fingerprinting.

Our Office is located on County Court Blvd across from the Tim Hortons in County Court Law Chambers.

The address is:
602-201 County Court Blvd
Brampton, ON L6W 4L2

We will respond to your inquiry within 24 hours.

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