The possession, trafficking, and sale of cocaine is charged as a felony in Illinois, as it is in other states (and under federal law). Depending on the severity of the crime (sale is more serious than possession); the amount of drugs, by weight; aggravating factors; and prior offenses, penalties range from a steep fine to as much as 50 years in prison. One aggravating factor, for instance, is sale of drugs within 1000 feet of a truck stop or school.
What is Considered "Possession?"
Possession is defined as physical dominion and control over something. What does that mean? Simply put, you are in possession of something if it is in your hand, or locked in a safe for which you have the key.
The other way to have possession of something is through "constructive possession." That means that a person knows of the presence of a controlled substance (like cocaine) and has intent and capability to maintain control and possession of it, or has exclusive control of the area where the controlled substance was located.
For example, suppose you live alone in an apartment and the cops find a small bag of cocaine in your kitchen drawer. Because you all have sole access to the kitchen, knowledge of the drugs may be easy to prove. You don't have to be holding the drugs in your hands to have "constructive possession" of it in the eyes of the law.
Learn more about Illinois cocaine laws in the following table. See FindLaw's Drug Charges section for more information.
|Code Section||720 ILCS 570/200, et seq.; Uniform Controlled Substances Act|
|Possession||Less than 15 g.: Class 4 felony, fine of up to $25,000 or 1-3 yrs.; 15-99 g.: Class 1 felony, mandatory 4-15 yrs.; 100-399 g.: mandatory 6-30 yrs.; 400-899 g.: mandatory 8-40 yrs.; Over 900 g.: mandatory 10-50 yrs.; Fines for any offense involving 100 g. or more: greater of $200,000 or street value|
|Sale||Less than 1 g.: Class 2 felony, 3-7 yrs.; more than 1 g. but less than 15 g.: Class 1 felony, 4-15 yrs.; 15-99 g.: 6-30 yrs.; 100-399 g.: 9-40 yrs.; 400-899 g.: 12-50 yrs.; Over 900 g.: 15-60 yrs.; Sale of amounts greater than 15 g. is a Class X felony; sale to minors: double penalties; Within 1000 ft. of truck stop or safety rest: double penalties; Within 1000 ft. of school: Class Y felony|
|Trafficking||Less than 15 g.: Class 1 felony, 4-15 yrs., up to $250,000 fine; 15-99 g.: 6-30 yrs.; 100-399 g.: 9-40 yrs.; 400-899 g.: 12-50 yrs.; 900+ g.: 15-60 yrs.; for all trafficking charges over 15 g., Class X felony and fine of up to $500,000 or full street value.
Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Research the Law
Illinois Cocaine Laws: Related Resources
Charged With a Cocaine-Related Offense? You May Want a Lawyer
Maybe you've been arrested and believe the charges aren't viable. Perhaps you believe you have a strong defense because the drugs didn't belong to you. Whatever your position, if you've been arrested and charged with a cocaine-related offense, you should speak with an Illinois criminal defense attorney who specializes in drug crimes.
Contact a qualified attorney.