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Selling Synthetic Cannabinoids: California Health and Safety Code 11357.5 HSC

Many people live with the concept that using marijuana is bad for them simply because they are meant to undergo random or mandatory drug testing at work. It’s one of the main reasons so many California residents forgo the use of marijuana, but there’s another option on the market casual marijuana users are looking into. It’s called synthetic cannabinoids. It’s a synthetic version of marijuana that’s said not to show up in a drug test, and many people try using this type of drug to get the high they want without the side effect of a positive drug test.

According to the California Health and Safety Code Section 11357.5, selling synthetic cannabinoids is illegal and grounds for legal punishment. There is no medical research that proves this type of drug is safer for users, and there’s belief the side effects of this are so serious they cause death. There’s no quality information about this type of drug, and it’s certainly not FDA-approved in any capacity.

The Penalty for Selling Synthetic Cannabinoids in California

This drug does not fall into a felony category, but it is one that falls into a situation in which you are going to face a misdemeanor charge if arrested. The fines do not exceed $1,000. Jail time could extend as long as six months. Depending on how many charges you’re arrested on, you might find there is a longer sentence as well as higher fines.

A California court is not required to give you the maximum sentence or a reduced penalty for any crime you are charged with. However, you might find that having a prior record of drug sales or any other crime could result in a judge sentencing you with the most serious punishment. If you have no prior arrests or convictions, a judge is more likely to issue a lighter sentence than the maximum.

What Constitutes Selling Synthetic Cannabinoids?

If you are arrested and charged with this crime, the court must be able to prove certain things. The court must be able to prove that you are guilty of selling, dispensing, distributing, giving, or administering the drug to anyone else at any time. The court must also prove you are guilty of possessing this drug with the intent to sell it to someone else.

If the court cannot prove you did this, there is a small chance you will face charges. However, if the evidence proves that both are true, you will go to jail and pay fines in accordance with the state penal code. The best defense is to simply not sell or possess this kind of synthetic drug.

Furthermore, California law requires that the synthetic drug must contain one or more of a long list of very specific ingredients. If it does not and it’s still labeled as a synthetic version of cannabis, it’s not illegal according to California law. If you can prove your synthetic compound does not include one or more of the ingredients listed in the penal code, you cannot be charged with this crime.

New synthetic products are being made every day in California, and the law is working hard to keep up with all the new chemicals to keep these drugs off the streets. However, the law doesn’t work nearly as fast as manufacturers of these types of cannabis products, which means there is very little the law can do about the newest products on the market. If you suspect the product you are selling contains only the newest version of these ingredients, there is a good chance they can be used to prove you did not break the law.

Selling synthetic cannabis in California is illegal, but only if it falls within specific parameters. If the product you are selling does not, it’s entirely possible you can legally sell it even in a store you own, online, or to your friends at dinner without facing legal consequences. However, you face a misdemeanor charge that includes jail time and fines if you sell this type of drug and it contains the frequently updated list of ingredients including the penal code section of California law.

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