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Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS)

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Trenton Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS) Lawyers

Knowledgeable Criminal Defense Lawyers Advocate For Clients Charged With Drug Possession In New Jersey

When drugs are susceptible to abuse, they are classified as controlled dangerous substances (CDS), making it illegal to possess, sell, manufacture, or distribute the drug.  If you or a loved one is facing a drug charge in New Jersey, it is important to understand your rights under the law and to seek a qualified criminal defense attorney to defend the charges against you.

The New Jersey controlled dangerous substance (CDS) lawyers at Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC have in-depth knowledge of New Jersey’s drug laws and share more than 18 years of experience. Our knowledgeable legal team protects your rights, skillfully defends the charges brought against you, and delivers personal attention to your case. 

Classification Of Controlled Dangerous Substances (CDS) In New Jersey  

New Jersey categorizes controlled dangerous substances (CDS) into five schedules, based on the substance’s currently accepted medicinal use, the drug’s potential for abuse, and the drug’s potential for causing addiction if it is abused. Schedule I drugs are considered the most dangerous, while Schedule V drugs are considered the least dangerous.

New Jersey’s five schedules for CDS are as follows:

Schedule I

These drugs do not have a legitimate, approved medical use and they have a high potential for abuse and addiction:

  • Heroin
  • Marijuana
  • Synthetic Marijuana
  • LSD
  • Acid
  • Psilocybin Mushrooms
  • MDMA (ecstasy)

Schedule II

These drugs have a high potential for abuse, which may lead to psychic or physical dependence. These drugs are currently accepted for medicinal use with severe restrictions:

  • Codeine
  • Cocaine
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin, Percocet)
  • Methamphetamine
  • Fentanyl
  • Hydrocodone (Vicodin)
  • Methylphenidate (Ritalin)
  • Morphine
  • Amphetamine, including Dexedrine & Adderall
  • Meperidine (Demerol)
  • Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
  • Methadone

Schedule III

These drugs have the potential for abuse that is less than the substances classified under Schedules I and II. These drugs are accepted for medicinal use but could cause high psychic dependence or low/moderate physical dependence: 

  • Anabolic Steroids
  • Tylenol With Codeine
  • Ketamine
  • Testosterone
  • Buprenorphine (Suboxone)

Schedule IV

These drugs have a low potential for abuse compared to the drugs listed in Schedules I, II, and III. These substances are accepted for medicinal use and may cause limited physical or psychic dependence:

  • Ambien (Zolpidem)
  • Xanax (Alprazolam)
  • Valium (Diazepam)
  • Clonazepam (Klonopin)
  • Darvocet (propoxyphene and acetaminophen)

Schedule V

These drugs have a low potential for abuse compared to the substances listed in the other Schedules. These drugs may be sold over-the counter for medical purposes, and may have limited psychic dependence or physical dependence:

  • Opium (less than 100 milligrams)
  • Codeine (less than 200 milligrams)
  • Ethylmorphine (less than 100 milligrams)
  • Dihydrocodeine (less than 100 milligrams)
  • Diphenoxylate (less than 2.5 milligrams) 

Skilled Criminal Defense Attorneys Aggressively Fight New Jersey’s Strict Penalties For Drug Possession 

The state of New Jersey has strict penalties for drug possession; these are as follows:

Cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and other illicit drugs

  • Possession of any amount is a third-degree offense and the penalty includes prison time of 3 to 5 years and a fine of up to $35,000


  • New Jersey allows medical use of marijuana; qualifying patients and/or their caregivers may possess up to 2 oz. of marijuana per month
  • Possession of less than 50g of marijuana or less than 5g of hashish is a disorderly persons offense. The penalty includes jail time of up to 6 months and a fine of up to $1,000
  • Possession of more than 50g of marijuana or more than 5 g of hashish is a fourth-degree offense. The penalty includes jail time of up to 18 months and a fine of up to $15,000

Drug Paraphernalia

  • Possession of any drug paraphernalia is a disorderly persons offense. The penalty includes jail time of up to 6 months and a fine of up to $1,000

Unauthorized Prescription Drugs

  • Possession of any amount of unauthorized prescription drugs is a third-degree crime. The penalty includes prison time of 3 to 5 years and a fine of up to $35,000

The skilled criminal defense attorneys at Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC aggressively defend our clients charged with drug crimes and fight New Jersey’s strict penalties for drug possession.

Dedicated Drug Offense Attorneys Defend Clients Facing Controlled Dangerous Substances (CDS) Charges

Being charged with a drug crime in New Jersey is a serious offense. An aggressive defense of the charges brought against you is the only way to have the charges reduced or dismissed. At Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC, our controlled dangerous substance attorneys build a strong, strategic defense of the charges against you and we have a track record of successful outcomes. Attorneys at Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC offer a free confidential case evaluation; schedule your confidential consultation today.

Frequently Asked Questions About Controlled Dangerous Substance Offenses In New Jersey

FAQ: Are there any exceptions to New Jersey’s laws regarding obtaining a controlled dangerous substance (CDS)?

Yes. While it is illegal to obtain or possess a controlled dangerous substance (CDS) in New Jersey, either knowingly or purposefully, there is an exception. If the CDS was obtained directly from a practitioner acting in a professional capacity, who issued the substance through a valid prescription or order form, or if the CDS was otherwise legally authorized, then you cannot be charged with a drug possession charge.

FAQ: How do I know if I can successfully defend the drug charges brought against me?

Every criminal case is unique, including those involving a drug charge. Knowing whether your rights have been violated and whether you have a strong case can be challenging. This is where an experienced drug offense attorney can lead the way. The criminal defense attorneys at Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC offer a free initial consultation — we will evaluate the evidence against you, explain your rights under the law, discuss the next steps in the criminal proceedings, and answer your questions. We believe it is important to have a full understanding of the charges you are facing as well as your legal options. Schedule your confidential consultation with a member of our team today.

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