In recent years, marijuana has gained a reputation as a "soft drug." However, this doesn't mean that law enforcement treats marijuana crimes -- especially those involving significant quantities of the drug -- any less seriously.
Last week, a Houston couple found themselves facing significant Texas drug charges after police discovered more than 100 pounds of marijuana hidden in their SUV.
The couple was stopped at a routine checkpoint on State Highway 16, where a drug-detecting dog alerted law enforcement to the possibility that the vehicle contained illegal substances.
Upon further inspection, Border Patrol agents found 32 bundles of marijuana hidden underneath the vehicle's seats. All told, police found approximately 111 pounds of marijuana. The estimated value of the drugs is $88,880.
Both individuals were arrested on suspicion of possessing more than 50 pounds but less than 2,000 pounds of marijuana. They were released after they each posted $50,000 bail.
If convicted, they could face serious penalties. Possession of between 50 and 2,000 pounds of marijuana is a felony of the second degree, punishable by two to 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Even possession of lesser amounts can carry significant penalties. Those convicted of possession of small amounts of marijuana could face jail time in addition to fines.
Law enforcement officials take drug charges very seriously, no matter the quantity of drugs in question. Knowing this, it is very important for those in Houston facing drug charges to consider employing a knowledgeable legal professional. Having the right person acting on your behalf can be beneficial when dealing with such serious criminal charges.
Source: Corpus Christi Caller-Times, "More than 100 Pounds of Marijuana Discovered in Houston Couple's SUV near Hebbronville," Steven Alford, Feb. 7, 2012.