How Does Virginia Address Methamphetamine Manufacturing?
It is well documented that manufacturing methamphetamine (meth) is a dangerous and hazardous process. In order to produce this illegal drug, many toxic chemicals are required. Furthermore, the manufacturing process releases some of those toxic chemicals into the air, which presents a serious danger for anyone close to the scene.
Recognizing this danger, the Commonwealth of Virginia has specific laws in place to prohibit the manufacture of meth. These laws exist in addition to provisions governing the manufacture of other illegal drugs and controlled substances. Additionally, the penalties for manufacturing meth are extremely harsh under Virginia law.
Meth Manufacture of Meth in Virginia
Under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-248.03, it is illegal to manufacture meth. It is also unlawful to possess meth with the intent to manufacture. Section 18.2-248.03 applies to meth itself as well as any derivatives, including salts and isomers.
Any person who violates Section 18.2-248.03 is guilty of a felony. Though the penalties do fluctuate based on the amount of meth in question. For example:
- Meth manufacturing of 28 grams or more — Results in a prison sentence ranging from five to 40 years as well as $500,000 in criminal fines. At least three years of the prison sentence must be served consecutively with any other criminal convictions.
- At least 227 grams — Results in a prison sentence ranging from five years to life as well as $1,000,000 in criminal fines. At least five years of the prison sentence must be served consecutively with any other criminal convictions.
Meth Manufacturing with Minor Child or Disabled Person
Under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-248.02, any person who manufactures — or attempts to manufacture — meth in the presence of certain types of people. Specifically, Section 18.2-248.02 applies to any person who knowingly manufactures meth in the presence of:
- Any minor child under 15 years old;
- A minor child aged 15 or older for whom the offender is responsible as a parent, custodian, or similar guardian; or
- A disabled, incapacitated, or helpless person of any age.
Additionally, Section 18.2-248.02 requires the offender to manufacture meth in one of the following locations:
- Apartments, as defined in Code of Virginia Section 55-79.2; or
- Hotel rooms, as defined in Code of Virginia Section 35.1-1.
Any person who violates Section 18.2-248.02 is guilty of a felony. Upon conviction, the offender will face a prison sentence between 10 and 40 years. The penalties under this section are in addition to and must be served consecutively with any other criminal convictions.
Let Us Help You with Your Case
If you are facing criminal charges for meth manufacturing in Virginia, it is wise to reach out to an adept criminal defense attorney. The Leesburg drug crimes attorneys at Simms Showers LLP, servicing Leesburg, Winchester, Fairfax, and Manassas, feature demonstrated aptitudes in the arena of criminal defense, including meth manufacturing and other drug crimes. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact us today for a free initial consultation.