Marijuana is legal in some states but not in Louisiana. If you are accused of possessing, distributing or cultivating this substance, you could be facing serious charges. Here’s an overview of Louisiana marijuana laws you should know.
Louisiana marijuana laws
According to Louisiana Revised Statutes, Title 40 Section 966, it is unlawful for any person to knowingly possess, manufacture, distribute, dispense, sell or possess with intent to distribute marijuana. Each crime has its own set of punishments, ranging from 15 days in jail to up to 40 years in prison. Fines range from as little as $100 to $1 million depending on the severity of the charge.
Possession of marijuana in Louisiana
Generally, if you’re found with less than 14 grams of marijuana in Louisiana for the first time, you will be charged with a misdemeanor and face up to 15 days in jail and a fine of up to $300. A second conviction can have harsher penalties of up to six months in prison and $500 in fines.
However, the recently passed House Bill 700, also known as the Cannabis Control Act, decriminalizes possession of small amounts of marijuana and creates a system for regulating the cultivation, sale and use of marijuana. The bill reduces the penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana from jail time to a fine only. For example, if you’re convicted of possessing 14 grams or less, the fine will be $100. For possession of between 14 grams and 2 pounds, the penalty will be $500.
Sale and cultivation of marijuana in Louisiana
Drug charges for cannabis distribution and growth are harsher. You could be sentenced to spend up to 40 years in prison and pay $1 million in fines if you’re convicted. Remember that your punishment will depend on the amount you are convicted of distributing or cultivating and the location and people you are selling to.
Therapeutic use of marijuana
The therapeutic use of marijuana is allowed in Louisiana for certain qualifying medical conditions, as recorded in Louisiana Revised Statutes, Title 40, Section 1046, such as cancer, glaucoma, muscle spasms, etc. To be eligible, you must obtain a prescription from a licensed physician.
It is important to note that if you are caught with marijuana in Louisiana, you may also be charged with possession of drug paraphernalia. This is a separate charge from possession of marijuana and carries its own penalties.