Los Angeles Drug Trafficking Attorney

Drug trafficking crimes encompass a broad range of behavior. Trafficking can begin with the manufacturing and cultivation of drugs, and it includes smuggling illegal substances into the U.S. through deception and illicit means. It includes transporting the drugs throughout California or the rest of the country, often crossing state borders. You can face California or federal drug trafficking charges even if you are not directly responsible for cultivating, manufacturing, transporting, distributing, or selling the drugs. If you’re facing charges for any of these offenses, you will need the help of a skilled drug attorney.

If you have been accused of trafficking drugs into the U.S. from other nations, between two or more states in the U.S., or within California, you should speak with a Los Angeles drug trafficking attorney from Spolin Law P.C.. For a free consultation of your case, contact us today at (310) 424-5816.

California Drug Trafficking Charges

It is illegal to traffic controlled substances under numerous California statutes, including:

Health and Safety Code 11352 – Trafficking Narcotics

It is illegal for any person to do the following to certain controlled substances that were once known as narcotics:

  • Transport
  • Import into the state
  • Sell
  • Furnish
  • Administer
  • Give away

It is also illegal to offer or attempt to transport, import, sell, furnish, administer, or give away these substances. If convicted, you can be sentenced to three, six, or nine years in prison for a first-time offense.

Health and Safety Code 11379 – Trafficking Dangerous Drugs

It is illegal for you to transport, import into the state, sell, furnish, administer, or give away some controlled substances (which are not narcotics) that were formally classified as dangerous drugs. This statute also makes it illegal to try or offer to transport, import, sell, furnish, administer, or give away these drugs. If convicted of this offense for the first time, you can be sentenced to three, six, or nine years in prison.

Health and Safety Code 11360 (Trafficking Marijuana)

You might think that you cannot get in trouble for dealing with marijuana because it is legal for recreational and medicinal use in California. A Los Angeles drug trafficking attorney will tell you that that assumption is false. Marijuana is still highly-regulated in California. If you are not properly licensed or have the lawful amount for personal use, then you can face criminal charges for marijuana trafficking. If you transport, import, sell, furnish, administer, or give away cannabis without a license, you can face an infraction or misdemeanor offense. However, if you have a criminal history, traffic a significant amount of the drug, or trafficked marijuana to minors, you could be charged with a felony and face two, three, or four years in prison.

Federal Drug Trafficking Charges

Drug trafficking is charged as a crime under the same law as drug manufacturing, smuggling, distribution, and possession. Based on 21 U.S. Code § 841, you can be charged with a serious crime if you knowingly or intentionally cultivate, manufacture, create, transport, or dispense controlled substances, or you possess drugs with the intention of performing one of these actions. You can also be charged with a crime for trafficking counterfeit substances, such as unlawfully manufactured prescription medications.

Penalties for Federal Drug Trafficking

Federal sentencing guidelines are complex, and they rely heavily on the type of drug, the amount of the drug or mixture, your criminal history, and whether any mitigating or aggravating factors were present in your case. If you’re concerned about the potential statutory penalties you may face as the result of drug trafficking charges, contact a Los Angeles drug trafficking attorney right away.

For a first-time offense, you may be sentenced to at least 10 years in prison for trafficking:

  • Substances containing heroin – One kilogram
  • Substances containing coca leaves, cocaine, cocaine salts, and isomers – Five kilograms
  • Substances containing cocaine base – 280 grams
  • PCP – 100 grams
  • Mixtures containing PCP – one kilogram or more
  • Substances containing LSD – 10 grams
  • Substances containing fentanyl – 400 grams
  • Substances containing marijuana – 1,000 kilograms
  • Methamphetamine, or its salts or isomers – 50 grams
  • Substances containing meth or its salts or isomers – One kilogram

For a first-time offense, you may be sentenced to between four and 20 years in prison for trafficking:

  • A substance containing heroin – 100 grams
  • A substance containing coca leaves, cocaine, cocaine salts, and isomers – 500 grams
  • A substance containing cocaine base – 28 grams
  • PCP – 10 grams
  • A mixture containing PCP – 100 grams or more
  • A substance containing LSD – One gram
  • A substance containing fentanyl – 40 grams of
  • A substance containing marijuana – 100 kilograms
  • Methamphetamine, its salts, or isomers – Five grams
  • A substance containing meth or its salts or isomers – 50 grams or more

You may face up to five years in prison for trafficking:

  • Less than 50 kilograms or marijuana, unless you have 50 or more marijuana plants (regardless of weight)
  • Less than 10 kilograms of hashish
  • Less than one kilogram of hashish oil


If you have previous drug, violent, or serious felony convictions, or the current offense causes another person to suffer a serious bodily injury or death, then your penalties will be heightened.

How a Los Angeles Drug Trafficking Attorney Can Help You

If you are arrested or charged with a drug trafficking offense, the best thing you can do for yourself is to hire a criminal defense attorney right away. At Spolin Law P.C., our first steps will be to protect you from the police by invoking your right to remain silent. We will prevent you from saying anything prosecutors may try to use against you.

We will thoroughly investigate the offenses you allegedly committed. We will gather evidence on your behalf and closely examine other evidence obtained by law enforcement officials. If we find there is evidence that should not be presented in court, we will file a motion to have it excluded. Through this investigation, we will determine the strongest defense strategy for your case. Once we know your wishes and have chosen a direction for your case, we will prepare to negotiate a plea deal or go to trial.

To learn more about how we can help you fight drug trafficking charges, schedule a free consultation with a Los Angeles drug trafficking attorney through our online form, or by calling (310) 424-5816.