California Health & Safety Code 11377 HS makes it a crime to possess methamphetamines without a valid prescription.  Under California Health & Safety Code 11377 other similar stimulants and other drugs are included:

  • “PCP” Phencyclidine
  • “GHB” or gamma hydroxybutyric
  • “SPECIAL K,” or  ketamine and
  • Some anabolic steroids.

Simple possession versus possession for sale

HS 11377 applies to possession of methamphetamines for personal use. This is also known as “simple” possession.  It is a less serious crime than Health and Safety Code 11378 possession of methamphetamines for sale.

Here is the type of Evidence that the Meth was for personal use ONLY:

  • You possessed only a small amount of methamphetamines,
  • The methamphetamines, were in one single packet (rather than lots of small packages such as baggies or small envelopes of folded paper known as bindles), and/or
  • Law enforcement also found drug paraphernalia such as a pipe, needles, or a straw for snorting the methamphetamines.

The Penalties under California Health and Safety Code 11377 HS

Simple possession of methamphetamines is usually a misdemeanor.  The consequences of a California Health and Safety Code 11377 conviction may include:

  • up to one year in county jail, and/or
  • a fine of up to $1,000

However, under HS 11377 possession of crystal meth can be charged as a felony if you have a prior conviction for:

  • a sex crime or
  • a serious offense such as murder or gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated.

The sentence for a felony violation of Health and Safety Code 11377 can include 16 months or two or three years in jail.

Are you eligible for drug rehabilitation under HS 11377?

You may be eligible for drug diversion (treatment) in lieu of jail time for a 11377 HS violation if:

  1. You are a first- or second-time non-violent offender, and
  2. The methamphetamines were for only your personal use.

You are not eligible for drug rehab instead of jail if you were convicted of or pleaded guilty to the following:

  • HS 11378—Possession of Methamphetamines for sale, or
  • HS 11379–Sale or transportation of Methamphetamine

You may still be eligible for drug rehab, however, if you are charged with one of these more serious crimes but plead to HS 11377 as part of a plea deal.

The Most Common Defenses to HS 11377—Possession of Methamphetamines

The best defense to a California possession of methamphetamine charge will depend on the facts of your case.  The most common defenses to HS 1137 include, but are not limited to the following:

  • You held a valid prescription for the methamphetamines and possessed an amount consistent with the prescription’s purpose,
  • The crystal meth did not belong to you, but belonged to someone else,
  • You did NOT know the drugs you possessed were a controlled substance, or
  • The police found the meth during an illegal search.

When you are facing substantial jail time, you ought to consider our Legal Services. Don’t let overzealous prosecutors put you in jail and or stigmatize you for the rest of your life…

Always a Free Consultation at Fiumara & Milligan, Law PC

Please feel free to call North Bay attorneys at Fiumara & Milligan Law, PC 24/7 at (707) 571-8600 in our centrally located Santa Rosa office in Sonoma County or call our office in San Rafael in Marin County at (415) 492-4507 to schedule a free and confidential consultation to keep you out of jail. 

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