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Are Vape Pens Illegal in New Jersey?
Vape pens in and of themselves as well as “vaping” is not illegal in New Jersey. With that being said, if the vape pen and/or E-Cigarette is altered and filled with a THC Oil or any other controlled dangerous substance (CDS) for that matter, it will become an illegal product and anyone caught possessing and/or distributing them will be facing serious criminal charges. An individual caught possessing a vape pen filled with THC oil can be charged under one of two statutes: the first being N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(4), which is a disorderly persons offense (misdemeanor) or they can be charged under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5.3, which is an indictable offense (felony). If you or a loved one has been charged with possession and/or distribution of a vape pen in Mercer County, we strongly urge that you contact an experienced defense attorney to understand your options. Contrary to what the general public’s perception is of marijuana and the legality of it, to date it is still a controlled dangerous substance and one that prosecutor’s still take very seriously. If you have unfortunately found yourself in this type of situation and would like to speak to one of our Mercer County drug possession defense attorneys about your options, please contact our Hamilton office at 609-789-0779.
Are Vape Pen’s Felony Offenses in New Jersey?
As touched upon above, there are two separate statutes that an individual could be charged under for possessing a vape pen filled with THC Oil. One of those statute, N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5.3 is considered an indictable offense, which is New Jersey’s version of a felony. If convicted of this offense an individual would be facing up to eighteen months (18) in a New Jersey State Prison, a fine not to exceed $15,000, a felony criminal record as well as a six month loss of driving privileges. Furthermore, since this is a felony offense, the case must be transferred to the Mercer County Superior Courthouse in Trenton for disposition as opposed to the local municipal court. Anyone charged with offense will first most likely be scheduled for a Central Judicial Processing Hearing and then a Pre-Indictment Conference. During these proceedings it could be possible for defense counsel to convince the prosecution to downgrade and remand the charges back to the local municipal court. In doing so, the felony charges would be downgraded to a disorderly persons offense. For more information on these proceedings, please click the links.
However, if the individual is charged under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(4) they will be facing a disorderly persons offense. This is New Jersey’s version of a misdemeanor. If convicted, an individual will be facing up to six months in the Mercer County jail, a $1,000 fine, a criminal record and a six month loss of license. Furthermore, all individuals charged under this subsection will litigate their charges in the local municipal court in the municipality where the incident happened.
Can I Avoid Jail Time on a THC Vape Pen Charge?
Depending on the individuals prior criminal history and the facts surrounding the charges, they may be eligible for one of New Jersey’s diversionary programs. These diversionary programs include the Conditional Discharge Program and the Pretrial Intervention Program. Each of which will allow for the individual to bypass the traditional methods of prosecution and be placed on a probation. If they complete the program without violating any of the terms they could avoid not only jail time but a criminal record as well.
Need a Lawyer for a THC Vape Pen Charge in West Windsor
At Proetta & Oliver we fully understand what a criminal conviction for a drug offense can do to ones future. As such we are dedicated to aggressively challenging the evidence presented against our clients in order to obtain the best possible outcome. We defend those accused of all types of drug offenses including the possession of marijuana, the possession of drug paraphernalia, the possession of heroin, the distribution of cocaine and the possession of CDS in a motor vehicle in courts throughout Mercer County. We serve all of Mercer County including West Windsor, Lawrenceville, Hamilton, Princeton, Robbinsville, Ewing and East Windsor. If you would like to schedule a free initial consultation today, please contact our Hamilton office at 609-789-0779 or you can try contacting us online.