Louisiana imposes harsh penalties for possession and distribution of controlled substances. The consequences for these convictions depend on the type and amount of substance and other factors.
Before facing a court date for this type of crime, learn more about the penalties for drug offenses in Louisiana.
Heroin possession and sale
Possession of any amount of heroin or opiates is a felony in Louisiana. The penalty for this conviction includes at least four years and up to 10 years in jail under the Department of Corrections and no possibility of parole or a suspended sentence. In addition to jail time, the offender must pay a fine of up to $50,000.
Selling heroin carries a similar fine, as well as a potential life sentence. Penalties increase if a person older than 25 or at least three years older sold heroin to a person younger than 18.
Cocaine possession and sale
In Louisiana, cocaine possession penalties may include:
- Fewer than 28 grams: $5,000 fine and up to five years in prison
- 28 to 200 grams: $50,000 to $150,000 fine and 10 to 60 years in prison
- 200 to 400 grams: $100,000 to $350,000 fine and 20 to 60 years in prison
- More than 400 grams: $250,000 to $600,000 fine and 30 to 60 years in prison
Selling cocaine results in a $50,000 fine and five to 30 years in prison, with up to life in prison if a person older than 25 sells cocaine to a minor. Manufacturing cocaine carries a fine of up to $500,000 and 40 to 99 years in prison.
The penalties for sale and possession of cocaine also apply to other Schedule I and II drugs. Examples of substances in this category include codeine, ecstasy, LSD and other hallucinogens, cannabis, morphine, fentanyl, oxycodone and opiates. Lower penalties apply to drugs in Schedule III or IV.