Criminal Sale in the Second Degree of a Controlled Substance: New York Penal Code § 220.41

Under NY Penal Code § 220.41, a person has committed the offense of criminal sale in the second degree of a controlled substance if knowingly and unlawfully the person possesses:

  1. One-half ounce or more of a narcotic drug; or
  2. One-half ounce or more of methamphetamine; or
  3. Five grams or more of a simulant; or
  4. Five milligrams or more of lysergic acid diethylamide; or
  5. Twenty-five milligrams or more of a hallucinogen; or
  6. Five grams or more of a hallucinogenic substance; or
  7. Three hundred sixty milligrams or more of methadone.

The assumption is that these large amounts of the different drugs are not for personal consumption, but for sale.

Hypothetical Case

Suppose the police in a large city received a tip that a significant amount of cocaine was being kept in a warehouse on the outskirts of the city for local distribution by a ring of drug dealers. A police task force planned a stakeout of the warehouse and observed a man leaving the warehouse with a small package. They followed the man and watched as he exchanged the small package for what appeared to be cash with a woman. They arrested the man and woman, and discovered that the package contained cocaine, as suspected. If the small package contained 0.5 ounces of cocaine or more, the man could be charged for the criminal sale in the second degree of a controlled substance.

Possible Defenses

Lack of probable cause. Probable cause is mandatory in the State of New York to legally conduct a search of a person, their car, apartment, or office, or any location that the defendant controls. If probable cause is not evident, then any drugs found while in the act of carrying out the law are not admissible as evidence. The police must have justifiable reason to believe that a person had committed a crime to invoke probable cause. Probable cause in the hypothetical case above may apply since the police saw a man leave the warehouse where cocaine was believed to be stored, and they also saw the cocaine and cash change hands.

The quantity of drugs did not satisfy the required minimum. If the person charged can demonstrate that the amount of drugs was less than the required minimum, then this section of the law will not apply.

Other lines of defense. Through thorough consideration of the accused’s testimony, along with the events of the case, a capable and savvy defense attorney may be able to expose other tactics to viably defend the client.

Possible Sentence

The sentence imposed will take into account the individual’s history and criminal record, as well as details of the the case.

Imprisonment. A person convicted of criminal sale in the second degree of a controlled substance is subject to sentencing for a Class A-II felony. The minimum imprisonment sentence is three to eight years, and the maximum imprisonment sentence is life.

Monetary fine. The convicted individual may be mandated to pay up to $50,000 in addition to the time spent in prison.

NY Penal Code § 220.41: Criminal Sale in the Second Degree of a Controlled Substance

To reiterate, criminal sale in the second degree of a controlled substance is implicated when a person knowingly and unlawfully sells:

  1. One-half ounce or more of a substance, mixture, compound, or preparation containing a narcotic drug; or
  2. One-half ounce or more of a substance, mixture, compound, or preparation containing methamphetamine, its isomers or isomer salts, or its salts; or
  3. Five grams or more of a stimulant; or
  4. Five milligrams or more of lysergic acid diethylamide; or
  5. Twenty-five milligrams or more of a hallucinogen; or
  6. Five grams or more of a hallucinogenic substance; or
  7. Three hundred sixty milligrams or more of methadone.
Attorney to Defend Against the Charge of Criminal Sale in the Second Degree of a Controlled Substance

Criminal sale in the second degree of a controlled substance is a Class A-II felony, one of the most serious offenses in New York. If you are accused of committing a controlled substance offense, you should contact a reputable and experienced defense lawyer immediately to protect yourself against imprisonment and stiff fines. To compound the situation, ancillary possession charges of drug and drug paraphernalia may also be brought to bear.

Elliott Adler PC is a reputable law firm that advocates on behalf of persons accused of criminal sale in the second degree of a controlled substance. The Elliot Adler PC law firm has successfully defended clients who have been accused of felony and misdemeanor crimes related to controlled substances and drugs in New York. The law firm develops viable defensive strategies to ward off charges of the sale, manufacturing, distribution, and possession of drugs. The Elliot Adler PC legal firm has capably represented clients who have been accused of drug crimes, including the sale or possession of marijuana, crack, methamphetamine, LSD, Vicodin, cocaine, heroin, OxyContin, PCP, and other controlled substances, as well as other drug crimes.

We can be reached at (212) 785-1300 or http://www.newyorkcriminallawyer24-7.com to schedule a no-obligation, free legal consultative meeting to evaluate your case.

Related Offenses

For additional information, refer to the following sections of the New York Penal Code:

  1. Operating as a major trafficker: § 220.77
  2. Criminal sale for a controlled substance a prescription: § 220.65
  3. Criminal possession in the second degree of a controlled substance: § 220.21