Loudoun County Possession of Marijuana Lawyer

Experienced Loudoun Marijuana Defense Lawyer

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Loudoun Possession of Marijuana Lawyer

In Loudoun County Virginia, possession of even the smallest quantity of marijuana carries a number of possible penalties including a fine, jail time, and a mandatory drivers license suspension.  Regardless of the punishment the court imposes, having a criminal conviction for possession of any drug, including marijuana, can be detrimental or even act as an absolute bar to certain types of employment.  There are a number of issues that may arise in a possession of marijuana case of which your attorney should be aware.  It is strongly advised that you consult a Loudoun County Possession of Marijuana Lawyer before you go to court.

Don’t Feel Pressured to Plead!

For first offenders, a 251 diversion pleading may not sound like a bad option.  And, in many cases, it’s not.  But don’t settle for that right out of the gates.  Have your case examined by experienced marijuana defense lawyer first to determine whether a diversion pleading is the proper course of action.  It’s always better to have a nolle prosequi or not guilty on your record than a dismissed due to 251 diversion pleading.

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I hired Mr. Kibria to represent me in what I thought were pretty unfair charges to begin with. He agreed and said he would work to get the charges dismissed. He did exactly that right away. Charges dismissed completely. I spent less then an hour in court for it too. He is a fantastic lawyer. He was super accessible and extremely responsive and cordial to all my requests and questions. If you need a defense attorney in DC, Mr. Kibria is the man to hire. Highly recommended! View on AVVO

Great DC defense attorney

I highly recommend Mr. Kibria. He is an excellent attorney and he achieves amazing results. If you need a lawyer in Washington DC, he is the one to hire. If I could rate him for 50 stars I would do that. View on AVVO

Fantastic DC lawyer

Mr. Kibria is the best attorney I have ever deal with. I was facing several serious charges including a DUI. Mr. Kibria worked tirelessly to get my case dismissed. He literally saved my life. If you find yourself in legal trouble in DC, Mr. Kibria is the lawyer to hire. View on AVVO

Amazing Washington DC Defense Attorney

I had a great experience with Mr. Kibria and I would hire him again. I recommend Mr. Kibria to anyone in the DC area. He was very helpful and informative and always responsive right away to my calls and texts. I was really appreciative of that as a lot of times it takes a while for attorneys to get back to you. Mr. Kibria met with me the same day I called and was able to walk me through the process during a free consultation face to face in his office. Also, he gave me a very affordable rate compared to many other attorneys in the area. If you receive a traffic ticket of any kind, make sure to call Mr. Kibria as you won't be disappointed with the service you receive. View on AVVO

Great quality service at a very affordable rate, highly recommend for any traffic ticket in the DC area

If you are in deep trouble, Nabeel is the lawyer you have to hire! I don't know what I would have done without him. What he did was simply amazing! I was charged with my 2nd DUI/OWI in less than a year, along with driving on a suspended license. I had a drink, drove on a suspended license, and hit a car. This is what I had going against me in my case. I was facing a conviction for 2nd DUI, OWI, and driving on a suspended license. I was facing a mandatory minimum 10 days in jail, if not more. The prosecutor was offering a plea where I would plea to a 2nd DUI conviction, driving on suspended license, and would be serving 10 days in jail. All the prosecutor was offering was to take the OWI off the table. I thought I was dead to rights. I was even willing to accept the plea, because I didn't think I could win at trial. Then Mr. Kibria showed me why he is awesome. He told me he wasn't going to let me go to jail and that he wasn't going to allow my future to be ruined. He said we are going to trial and that he was going to fight the prosecutors on every angle. And that's exactly what he did. He took the case to trial and beat all the charges. He got me an acquittal on ALL the charges. He saved my life. Nabeel is a truly amazing attorney. Not only is he awesome in court and a life saver, he is someone who cares abut you as a person. He was with me every step of the way, whenever I needed him, from the day I called him to talk about the case to the moment we walked out of court free. He did a lot more than just bail me out of a dead end situation, he gave me support and advise and made me feel safe. He gave me hope. If you are in trouble, if you are facing an impossible situation, then Mr. Kibria is the lawyer you NEED. He cares, he fights hard and most importantly, HE WINS! View on AVVO

Super DUI & Criminal Lawyer. The defense lawyer you need in the toughest times!

Justin Ervin, Esq.

Principal Attorney

Lawyer specializing in DUI and criminal defense throughout Northern Virginia.

fairfax dui

Experienced Marijuana Defense in Loudoun County and Northern Virginia

Possession of Marijuana Defense

Possession of Marijuana is illegal in Virginia pursuant to VA Code 18.2-250.1.  Under the statute, possession must be proven to have been “knowing” or “intentional.”  This requirement is one of the first aspects of your case that we will directly address at Ervin Kibria.  These possession requirements mean that the government must prove that you either knew about the marijuana or that you intended to have marijuana in your possession, and that it wasn’t unintentional.  Sometimes, this can be significant burden for the prosecution.  The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant was (1) aware of the presence and (2) character of the drug, and (3) that the defendant possessed it.  This issue of “possession” is critical – mere presence near or in the proximity of marijuana is not enough to establish a person’s possession of the drug.

Often times, the prosecution is forced to resort to “constructive possession” of the marijuana.  In a constructive possession argument, the prosecution will offer circumstantial evidence concerning acts, statements, or conduct of the defendant that could lead the judge or jury to believe that the defendant was both aware of the presence of the marijuana and experience dominion over it.  However, having an experienced marijuana defense attorney can make it very difficult for the prosecution to prove that the defendant possessed – actually or constructively – the marijuana.


Penalties For a First Offense of Possession of Marijuana:

  • Misdemeanor conviction
  • Up to 30 days in jail
  • $500 fine
  • 6 months lost of driver’s license (even if you were not driving at the time of your arrest).


Possession with Intent to Distribute (PWID)

Possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute is illegal under VA Code 18.2-248.1.  There a number of factors that are considered by both the arresting officer and the Commonwealth’s Attorney assigned to the case in determining whether to charge the defendant with simple possession of marijuana or with possession with intent to distribute.

  1. Packaging – splitting up portion of marijuana (or any illicit drug for that matter) in plastic bags is an indication that the defendant was intending to distribute the drug.
  2. Scales and other equipment – if the officers find equipment used for measuring out allotments of marijuana or any other drug, it is very likely that you will be charged with PWID.
  3. Quantity – the amount of marijuana that you have in your possession is also a very strong indictor of your intent.  Generally a small amount is considered to be for personal consumption and will be treated as simple possession.  A large amount, however, is another indicator that you were intending to distribute the marijuana, rather than just use it individually.
  4. Defendant’s Behavior – the officer will provide testimony as to to the defendant’s statements or behavior, which could signal that the defendant intended to distribute the marijuana.
  5. Money – having a large amount of money present at the same time that marijuana (or any other drug) is discovered will immediately raise red flags concerning whether there was an intent to distribute the drug.  This generally suggests profits of previous sales of marijuana.


Penalties for Possession of Marijuana With Intent to Distribute (PWID):

  • Class 1 Misdemeanor Conviction
  • Up to 12 months jail
  • Up to $2,500 fine
  • Loss of driver’s license
  • Violations with more than 1/2 ounce of marijuana, but less than 5 pounds is a class 5 felony and is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
  • Violations with more than five pounds of marijuana is a felony punishable by 5 to 30 years in prison.

First Time Possession of Marijuana Offense

Charged with your first possession of marijuana offense?  Click here!

Marijuana Possession & Illegal Searches

The Fourth Amendment of the Constitution protects against unreasonable searches and seizures, and this constitutional right is most often implicated in drug related offenses, particularly possession of marijuana.

Since the only evidence that can be used against you in court is the evidence that the police discover, it is critical to hire a marijuana defense attorney that can properly examine the facts of your case, the situation behind the search, and determine whether or not the search was conducted properly and that it was constitutionally valid.  If the search was not valid – generally because the police did not have probably cause to conduct the search – then all the evidence found cannot be used in court against you.  Often the result is that the charges against you will be dropped.

The Probable Cause Requirement For a Search

Police may search a suspect without first getting a search warrant only if probable cause exists to conduct the search.  This often comes into play in situations where the defendant has been pulled over while operating a motor vehicle.  Because the vehicle is a moving object, and is being operated on a public highway, there is a far lower expectation of privacy than, say, in your home.  Consequently, probable cause is all that is necessary to conduct a search of a vehicle.  However, the Supreme Court of the United States has held that the probable cause must be “particularized to the particular area of the vehicle.”  Consequently, just because an officer claims to smell marijuana, that itself does not give the officer probable cause to search every inch of the vehicle.  Rather, he only has probable cause to search areas of the vehicle that have a  “reasonable probability” of hiding marijuana.

Searching the Trunk of a Vehicle Upon Probable Cause of Possession of Marijuana

Whether or not an officer has probable cause to search the trunk of a vehicle that has been lawfully stopped to search for marijuana largely turns on whether the officer claims to smell “burnt” or “raw” marijuana.  While Virginia courts have not directly address this issue, the Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit has made this distinction crystal clear.  If the officer smells burning marijuana coming from the passenger compartment of a vehicle that he/she has lawfully stopped, that officer then has probable cause to search ONLY the passenger compartment of that vehicle because it is not reasonable to suggest that the smell of burning marijuana is emanating from the trunk of the vehicle.  If, however, the officer testifies that he/she smelled “raw” marijuana, then the probable cause shifts to a wider “particularized area” because the probable cause relates to the possession of marijuana, and not necessary just to its use.  Again, having an experienced marijuana defense attorney is critical to determining whether any of these unjust search issues apply to your case.

Virginia Marijuana Offense Penalty List:

  • First Offense Possession – Maximum jail time of 30 days
  • Subsequent Possession Offenses – Up to 12 months jail
  • Possession of Marijuana With Intent to Distribute (PWID) – Up to 12 months jail.
  • Possession of Marijuana With Intent to Distribute, Over 1/2 ounces but less than 5 pounds – 1 to 10 years prison.
  • Possession of Marijuana With Intent to Distribute, Over 5 pounds – 5 to 30 years prison.
  • Possession of Marijuana With Intent to Distribute, 3rd or subsequent felony – Up to 12 months jail.
  • Selling less than 1 ounce of marijuana to a minor – 10 to 50 years jail, with a mandatory minimum of 2 years prison.
  • Selling more than 1 ounce of marijuana to a minor – 10 to 50 years jail, with a mandatory minimum of 5 years prison.
  • Manufacturing Marijuana Not for Personal Use – 5 to 30 years prison.

Justin is a man of his words and I couldn’t ask for a better lawyer. Justin fought for my case and was with me every step of the way. Communication was concise and he was available all the time. The thing that impressed me the most is not the outcome of my case but how he handled everything easily. View on AVVO

Terrific Outcome!

I hired Mr. Ervin to help with my possession of marijuana case. Other attorneys I spoke to told me that there was not much to do but take a plea deal and suck it up. But Mr. Ervin immediately saw problems with the case and thought that the search was illegal. We went all the way to trial and I was found not guilty. Mr. Ervin did a fantastic job! View on AVVO

Not Guilty!

Before contacting Mr. Ervin, I called two other attorneys about my synthetic marijuana case and they both told me that there was nothing to do and that I should just plead guilty and ask the judge for mercy. Luckily I made one more call to Mr. Ervin. First I liked that he was younger cause it felt like he talked to me like a person. He spent time explaining the case to me and agreed to help me out. He found out that there was a problem with the test and got the case dismissed. He did a great job and I'm very happy. View on AVVO

Awesome Defense

Mr. Ervin was my lawyer when I was facing a serious charge during a dark time in my life. I've been through the legal system before and I've met my share of lawyers. Most of them don't have the time to really listen to what I have to say. They don't care what my story is. Mr. Ervin did care, and he did listen. He won my assault case and I definitely recommend him! View on AVVO

Exceptional Lawyers Who Care

I am minor international student studying in the United States, and this was my first experience with the US court system. I had a serious criminal traffic matter, but Mr. Ervin carefully explained to me how the court system works and what I should expect. He put a lot of time into my case and was always available. It was a complicated case, but he got it dismissed in the first hearing. I would recommend him to anyone! View on AVVO

Great, Patient Attorney

I retained the services of Nabeel Kibria for a complicated criminal case, in which I was wrongfully accused. I was very concerned and apprehensive as I did not know exactly what I was walking into at the time. All I knew was that I was potentially facing jail time if convicted. Upon hiring Mr. Kibria he was very considerate, understanding and thoroughly explained the legal process moving forward. View on AVVO

Great Criminal Defense Attorney