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Exploring Maryland Drug Crimes Against Kingpins & Traffickers

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Within the umbrella of drug crimes in Maryland, there are special provisions that address kingpins and traffickers. These high-level actors in the illegal drug trade represent a clear danger to Maryland health and public safety. Accordingly, there are stringent laws against both drug kingpins and traffickers in Maryland.

Drug Kingpins – Maryland Laws & Penalties

Maryland Code of Criminal Law Section 5-613 addresses the topic of drug kingpins. Under this section, the term drug kingpin refers to any person who:

  • Serves as an organizer, supervisor, financier, or manager; and
  • Conspires to manufacture, distribute, dispense, or transport illegal drugs.

In addition to the conditions above, there is another requirement under Maryland Code of Criminal Law Section 5-612. The subject of a drug kingpin’s conspiracy must involve at least:

  • 50 pounds of cannabis;
  • 448 grams of cocaine;
  • 448 grams of any mixture containing cocaine;
  • 448 grams of cocaine base, aka crack cocaine;
  • 28 grams of morphine or opium;
  • 28 grams of any mixture containing morphine or opium;
  • 5 grams of fentanyl;
  • 28 grams of any mixture containing fentanyl;
  • 1,000 dosage units of LSD or any mixture containing an equivalent amount of LSD;
  • 16 ounces of liquid PCP;
  • 448 grams of any mixture containing PCP;
  • 448 grams of methamphetamine; or
  • 448 grams of any mixture containing methamphetamine.

Under Maryland law, it is a felony crime to act as a drug kingpin. Upon conviction for this felony, the punishment includes a prison sentence between 20 and 40 years as well as criminal fines up to $1 million. Moreover, the perpetrator is ineligible for parole during the mandatory minimum confinement period of 20 years.

Drug Traffickers – Maryland Laws & Penalties 

Maryland Code of Criminal Law Section 5-614 addresses the topic of drug traffickers. Under this section, the term drug trafficker refers to any person who tries to transport the following into Maryland:

  • 45 kilograms or more of cannabis;
  • 28 grams or more of cocaine or any mixture containing an equivalent amount of cocaine;
  • 4 grams or more of morphine, opium, or any derivative;
  • 1,000 dosage units or more of LSD or any mixture containing an equivalent amount of LSD;
  • 28 grams or more of PCP in liquid or powder form;
  • 112 grams or more of any mixture containing PCP;
  • 1,000 dosage units or more of methaqualone;
  • 28 grams or more of methamphetamine or any mixture containing an equivalent amount of methamphetamine; or
  • 4 grams or more of fentanyl or any fentanyl analogue.

Under Maryland law, it is a felony crime to act as a drug trafficker. Upon conviction for this felony, there is a maximum punishment of 25 years in prison and $50,000 in criminal fines.

On the other hand, Section 5-614 establishes a separate penalty for trafficking lesser amounts of cannabis. It remains a felony crime when trafficking involves more than five kilograms but less than 45 kilograms. However, the maximum punishment changes to 10 years in prison and $10,000 in criminal fines.

Do You Need Legal Help?

If you need legal assistance with Maryland charges for a drug crime, contact the skilled Bel Air drug crime attorneys at Schlaich & Thompson, Chartered. We can assist you throughout each step of your case.

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