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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 127827 Find in a Library
Title: Narcotic Drugs: Possession and Distribution (From Contemporary Criminal Procedure, P 555-577, 1990, Larry E Holtz -- See NCJ-127813)
Author(s): L E Holtz
Date Published: 1990
Page Count: 23
Sponsoring Agency: Gould Publications, Inc
Longwood, FL 32750-3724
Sale Source: Gould Publications, Inc
1333 North US Highway 17-92
Longwood, FL 32750-3724
United States of America
Type: Legislation/Policy Description
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Significant Federal circuit court and Pennsylvania State Court decisions are reviewed to illustrate legal tenets pertinent to proving the possession and distribution of illegal drugs.
Abstract: In United States v. Caballero (1983), the Federal Fifth Circuit Court ruled that the mere presence or association with those who control or possess illegal drugs does not automatically prove constructive possession of illegal drugs. The District of Columbia Circuit Court held in United States v. James (1985) that circumstances which clearly show that a person was knowingly in a position to exercise dominion or control over illegal drugs is sufficient to prove constructive possession. In United States v. Massey (1982), the 10th Circuit Court held that a defendant observed picking marijuana and loading it into a car was in constructive possession of it even though he was riding in a car following the car with the marijuana at the time of his arrest. In other cases, courts ruled that possessing the key to a crack house constitutes constructive possession and that more than one person may have possession of an illegal substance at the same time. In cases pertaining to the illegal distribution of drugs, the proof factors identified are quantity, paraphernalia, purity, the presence of large cash sums, location, the presence of firearms, and possessor addiction to the same or a different drug.
Main Term(s): Drug laws
Index Term(s): Criminal intent; Federal courts; Pennsylvania; State courts
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