Everybody knows the drugs that are illegal like cocaine, heroin and methamphetamines. However, what you may not know is that drug charges can go much further than the drugs themselves. Drug paraphernalia charges are levied whenever police seize items that are associated with the use or production of drugs. This can include something as blatant as a dirty syringe or as innocuous as a teaspoon. It all depends upon the context of the search and seizure of the items.
There is a complicated collage of state and federal laws that govern drug and drug paraphernalia charges, but the general gist is you may not: Mail, transport, import or export drug paraphernalia across state or foreign borders or sell or try to sell paraphernalia.
Now, again, the difference between a teaspoon for sugar and a teaspoon for drugs is the context of the arrest and seizure of evidence. Usually, you should not face drug paraphernalia charges without corresponding drug charges. However, it can happen because the presence of drugs will lend that context. The law gives a lot of discretion to investigating and arresting officers to tease out the difference. It is important that you remain aware of every possible charge you may face should this ever happen to you.
These laws are inconsistently applied because of that ambiguity. Sometimes whether or not you face charges depends entirely upon the arresting officer and how they interpret your arrest. If you were recently arrested on drug paraphernalia charges then you may want to consult with a criminal defense attorney to review your case. If you face only a paraphernalia charge usually your sentence will be lighter. However, don’t take this lightly because drug paraphernalia charges can quickly add up against you depending on how many items were seized.