There are many kinds of drug crimes that you can be accused of today, and the line between them can be slim. It's important to know the charges you could be facing in the future, so you can decide the best way to defend yourself with the help of your attorney. Each of these crimes could be penalized differently, so the key is to argue your defense against the crimes to try to lower your charges or have them dismissed.
Possession is one kind of drug crime you've probably heard of in the past. While possession charges vary by state, it's both a federal and state crime. You are not legally allowed to be in possession of illicit controlled substances such as heroin or cocaine. If you are found to have these drugs, then you could be charged with possession or the intent to distribute. Possession itself tends to be a lesser penalty than possession with the intent to distribute.
Delivery or manufacturing is another charge you could face. This is when you are involved in any step of the process of creating or producing the drug. You could face prison time and fines if you're charged and convicted of this crime.
Drug trafficking is different because it involves the transportation of drugs. Drug trafficking is a felony, because it usually means a large amount of drugs are being transferred between locations. You can face up to life in prison for this charge, so it's important to defend yourself if there's any risk of this charge being placed against you.
Source: FindLaw, "Types of Drug Crimes," accessed April 19, 2016