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Michael Berg

Michael Berg, Certified Specialist in Criminal Law

Drug Crimes

San Jose Drug Crimes:

Drug crimes in San Jose are zealously prosecuted by the Santa Clara District Attorney. Drug crimes include:

  • Possession
  • Trafficking
  • Sales and transportation of controlled substances
  • Methamphetamine sales and transportation
  • Cultivation
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Manufacturing

Sentences vary for drug offenses, as found in the California Penal Code Drug Felony Sentencing Schedule. Below are a few of the many offenses and the suggested sentences. The lower number is for a first offense and the higher number is for a third offense:

  • Possession of a controlled substance for sale: 2 – 4 years
  • Sale by an adult to a minor of a controlled substance at a school or public playground: 5 – 9 years
  • Minor inducing another minor's involvement with a controlled substance: 16 months – 3 years
  • Under the influence of a controlled substance while in possession of a loaded firearm: 16 months – 3 years
  • Selling or furnishing a substance falsely represented to be a controlled substance: 16 months – 3 years
  • An adult involving a minor under 14 years of age with marijuana: 3 – 7 years

If charged with a drug crime, obtain legal representation immediately. As always, a charge is not a conviction. Your San Jose drug crimes attorney will fight to maintain your innocence and freedom. Expect the best results with a qualified and experienced criminal defense attorney. It is in your best interest to start your defense immediately. Call our office for a free legal consultation.

San Jose Alternatives to Incarceration:

California offers drug diversion programs as an alternative to jail or prison. Diversion programs vary but they all stress rehabilitation rather than incarceration. Still, there are specific conditions that must be met and the programs require discipline. These programs are for nonviolent drug offenders who are not involved in sales or distribution, but rather, use drugs personally. The theory behind the initiative is to help drug addicts actually overcome their addiction rather than to just punish them. The programs include:

1. Proposition 36:

Proposition 36 was approved by California voters in 2000, and offers first time and repeat offenders drug treatment instead of jail or prison sentences. The program is designed to treat addiction. Prop. 36 actually requires drug treatment instead of incarceration.  The treatment includes:

  • Assessment
  • Treatment
  • Probation and supervision
  • Court progress reviews
  • Nonviolent offenders

2. California Drug Court:

  • Offender completes the sentence in drug rehabilitation
  • Drug offense charges can be dismissed if rehab is successfully completed
  • Nonviolent offenders

3. Deferred Entry of Judgment (DEJ) – Penal Code 1000 PC

  • Drug rehabilitation treatment similar to the other programs
  • Drug education – 20 hours or more
  • Charges can be dismissed if conditions are met
  • Defendant can lawfully deny the offense upon completion of program
  • Nonviolent offenders

If you were charged with a California misdemeanor or felony drug offense, your San Jose drug crimes attorney will aggressively defend you. Evidence and testimony will be reviewed and carefully examined for flaws and discrepancies; they often exist. Your lawyer will seek a dismissal, reduction in charges or a satisfactory plea bargain. If a diversion program is a viable option, he will help guide you into one that best serves you.  Call our office now for a free consultation to discuss how we may help you. Your freedom is at stake. Do not delay.

Defenses to Drug Crimes:

Your attorney is duty-bound to vigorously defend you. He may employ defensive strategies that can lead to dismissed or reduced charges:

  • Suppressing evidence – illegally obtained evidence is inadmissible
  • Procedural misconduct on the part of the arresting officers or others – may void the case
  • Violations of search and seizure laws – improper search and seizure techniques may result in dismissal
  • Clerical improprieties and inaccuracies – improper identity, facts, information may benefit you
  • Statute of limitations – case must follow specific timelines
  • Evidence – authenticity, chain of custody may be challenged

Every case will be tried upon its own merits and your San Jose drug crimes attorney will address specific issues with the goal of obtaining a dismissal of the case whenever possible. If a dismissal is not possible, your attorney will ask your permission before accepting a plea agreement with the prosecutor. If you do not feel that the agreement is satisfactory, your lawyer will take the the case to trial. Obtain the legal representation that you need. Call our offices to arrange a free consultation. Time is of the essence.

Expunging Your Drug Record

In California, it is possible to qualify for an expungement in certain cases. Your San Jose criminal defense attorney can help you with the process. You may be eligible for an expungement if you were convicted of a misdemeanor or felony. However, if you were sentenced to prison you are not eligible to expunge your records. If you were sentenced to probation and successfully completed the terms of your probation, you are generally eligible to have your records expunged. You will be required to go before the court for an expungement hearing. If you would like to have your drug conviction – or other offense – expunged, obtain the help of a qualified San Jose criminal defense attorney. He will take knowing control and guide you through the process. There are requirements, including notifying the District Attorney in advance of the hearing, that must be complied with. Your attorney is aware of the procedures and timelines. Do not go through this important process alone. Call our office today for a free consultation to discuss your expungement.


  • Department of Alcohol and Drug Services: (408) 792-5651
  • Assessment Center: (408) 468-1870
  • Adult Probation Office: ((408) 435-2100
  • The Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara,
  • Santa Clara Downtown Superior Court (DTS), 191 N. First St., San Jose CA 95113, (408) 882-2120
  • Criminal Cases: Hall of Justice, 190-200 West Hedding Street, San Jose, CA 95110, (408) 808-6600
  • The Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara, Main Hall of Justice Phone Number: (408) 808-6600
  • The Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara, Mailing Address: 191 N. First Street, San Jose, CA 95113
  • California Courts, Judicial Branch Home,
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California,
  • Office of the District Attorney, Santa Clara County, 70 West Hedding Street, West Wing, San Jose, CA 95110,
  • Office of the District Attorney, Santa Clara County, (408) 299-7400,
  • Office of the District Attorney, Santa Clara County, email,
  • United States Attorney, Northern District of California, 150 Almaden Blvd., Suite 900, San Jose, CA 95113
  • United States Attorney, Northern District of California, San Jose, CA