Controlled Substance Violations and Other Crimes/Activity

The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) forms the framework for Michigan law enforcement’s ability to pursue, investigate, and prosecute individuals suspected of federal drug crimes. The CSA categorizes both illegal and legal substances into “schedules” (Schedule I, II, III, IV, and V) and lays the foundation for investigation procedures and sentencing guidelines.

Therefore, if you’re under arrest or investigation for an alleged drug crime, it means that you have violated certain statutes of the Controlled Substances Act as well as Michigan state drug laws. For this reason, when choosing an attorney to represent your case in court, you need to make sure that your lawyer has in-depth and practical knowledge of the CSA and other drug laws. At Grabel & Associates, we boast some of the leading Federal drug crimes lawyers in Michigan, and we have the resources and criminal defense strategies to mount a thorough defense.

To speak with the criminal drug attorneys at Grabel & Associates during a free, no-obligation consultation, call our Lansing, MI law office today at 1-800-342-7896. In the meantime, you can find more information about the various controlled substance violations and other crimes/activities below.

Possession of a Controlled Substance

One of the most common drug crimes in Michigan is possession of a controlled substance. In order for state prosecutors to convict an alleged offender, prosecutors must prove that:

  • The defendant unlawfully possessed a controlled substance
  • The defendant unlawfully possessed a mixture that contained controlled substances
  • The defendant knowingly and unlawfully possessed the controlled substance
  • The defendant did not have a prescription for the controlled substance
  • The defendant was not otherwise authorized to possess the controlled substance

Unlawful use of marijuana is a minor penalty in Michigan, and convicted individuals could be looking at a misdemeanor punishable by 90 days to one year. If the defendant was caught in possession of fewer than 50 grams of heroin, cocaine, or methamphetamine, however, he/she could be looking at a felony punishable by four years imprisonment. For 50 to 450 grams, the potential punishment increases to 20 years.

Keep in mind that, in Michigan, possession of a controlled substance can be actual or constructive. Actual possession means that law enforcement found the drugs in the defendant’s pocket, hand, or on his/her person. Constructive possession means that law enforcement found the drugs on the defendant’s property (of which he/she has dominion), such as a room in his/her house or in the glovebox of his/her car.

Manufacture, Delivery or Intent to Deliver

In addition to possession, Michigan law enforcement heavily prosecutes individuals suspected of manufacturing, delivering (also trafficking), or intending to deliver a controlled substance. As such, there are countless Michigan laws that cover the wide range of crimes and activities involved in these processes. Additionally, violations such as manufacturing, trafficking, and intending to deliver generally include very severe penalties defined by extended imprisonment and huge fines. Multiple offenders could even be looking at life in prison (Michigan has some of the toughest drug laws in the nation).

In terms of delivery and trafficking, state prosecution must prove that the defendant knowingly delivered or attempted to deliver a controlled substance. This includes drugs from every Schedule; for example, Michigan state law can prosecute physicians or pharmacists who illegally dispensed drugs. Evidence for delivery can either be direct or circumstantial. Direct often means that law enforcement caught the defendant red-handed, while circumstantial may mean that the defendant was caught with a large quantity of drugs separated in individual baggies (and the defendant had a weighing scale, for instance).

In terms of manufacturing, Michigan law has several statutes that cover the controlled substance manufacturing process, from possessing instruments used for manufacturing drugs to hosting a manufacturing operation on your property.

Other Controlled Substance Violations and Other Crimes

In addition to the “standard” drug crimes, such as possession, trafficking, and manufacturing, there are many other designated controlled substance violations that are often connected with violent crimes, property crimes, and even financial crimes. Federal and Michigan state laws attempt to curb these crimes, as well as organized crime and drug conspiracies, through some of the following laws:

  • Attempt and Conspiracy (21 U.S.C. 846, 963) — The defendant attempted to commit a drug crime or form a drug conspiracy. This violation carries the same penalties as those prescribed for the offense, regardless of the end result.
  • Use of a Controlled Substance to Commit a Crime of Violence (21 U.S.C. 841(b)(7)) — Using drugs, whether distributing or trafficking, with intent to commit a crime of violence can result in a prison sentence of up to 20 years.
  • Continuing Criminal Enterprise (21 U.S.C. 848) — Engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise can result in a prison sentence from 20 years to life.
  • Other Controlled Substance Violations — Some other violations include establishing manufacturing operations (21 U.S.C. 856), narco-terrorism (21 U.S.C. 960a), robberies involving controlled substances (18 U.S.C. 2118(a)), and many others.

Contact the Attorneys at Grabel & Associates Today

There are countless other controlled substance violations and other crimes/activities in Michigan. If law enforcement suspects that you are associated with some controlled substance violation, you need to contact an experienced Michigan drug crimes attorney as soon as possible.

At Grabel & Associates, we have represented clients charged with nearly every drug crime under Michigan law; in other words, we’ve seen it all before. We understand the state prosecution process as well as the evidence that prosecutors will need to secure a conviction, and we can mount a comprehensive and aggressive defense designed to negate the prosecution’s narrative, evidence, and witness testimonies.

For a free consultation with the drug lawyers at Grabel & Associates, call us now at 1-800-342-7896.


With drug crime defense attorneys statewide, Grabel & Associates defends people throughout Michigan charged with possession, intent to distribute, manufacturing, cultivation and illegal prescription drugs.