What Are the Penalties for Drug Trafficking in Texas?

A conviction for drug trafficking is severely punished in Texas, potentially with several months in jail or many years in prison. When you are charged with this crime, it’s essential to seek the legal services of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Only with professional legal assistance can you increase your odds of avoiding a conviction or securing a better outcome to one.

What Is Drug Trafficking?

Most people think of drug trafficking in terms of transporting drugs, but the legal definition is broader in Texas. Here, drug trafficking includes the manufacturing, delivery, and/or possession with intent to deliver illegal drugs.

Drug trafficking between states or across the border with Mexico falls within the federal government’s jurisdiction and would be charged as a federal crime; when this offense is alleged to have occurred strictly within Texas’ borders, however, it’s charged as a state crime.

Drug Categories & Drug Trafficking

Texas’s Controlled Substances Act organizes drugs into several groups referred to as “penalty groups.”

These groups are as follows:

  • Penalty Group 1: Opiates, cocaine and methamphetamine, fentanyl, and ketamine
  • Penalty Group 1A: LSD
  • Penalty Group 2: Hallucinogens other than LSD
  • Penalty Group 3: Stimulants and depressants such as Ritalin, Xanax, and benzos
  • Penalty Group 4: Narcotics such as codeine and morphine

These groups are organized according to the believed risk of abuse for each drug and whether or not there is a valid medical use for the drug.

Drug Trafficking Penalties Scale with Each Penalty Group

A conviction for drug trafficking depends on which penalty group the substance in question is included, along with the alleged quantity and whether or not the defendant has prior drug-related offenses.

For example, trafficking less than 28 grams of a substance in penalty groups 3-4 could be charged as a state jail felony (up to 2 years in prison) but trafficking only up to a gram of a substance in Penalty Group 1 could have a similar outcome.

For a more detailed explanation of the potential consequences you should face for a conviction of your charges, consult with an experienced drug crimes lawyer.

Contact Us for Legal Assistance

Rodriguez & Gimbert, P.L.L.C., has extensive experience defending clients against drug trafficking charges in both state and federal courts. Our attorneys understand the complexities of these cases and have the skill to help you navigate the legal system so that your rights are protected throughout the process.

Schedule a consultation with us today by contacting our firm online.