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Charged with a Drug Crime?
With your future at stake, you need a lawyer with unmatched knowledge and skill to defend your freedom.

Drug Crime Attorney in New Jersey

Are you facing drug crime charges in Hackensack, Bergen County, or Northern New Jersey? If so, you need to speak with an experienced criminal defense lawyer from a trusted law firm as soon as possible.

Drug crimes carry severe penalties — including jail time, hefty fines, and long-term damage to your reputation and employment opportunities. Hiring the right defense attorney in this critical moment can mean the difference between freedom and incarceration, especially if you face serious charges. Because each case is unique, you need an attorney who will focus on the details to craft a customized and aggressive defense.

You can trust top-rated drug crime lawyer Alan Peyrouton to fight for your rights and skillfully guide you through this frightening and uncertain moment.

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Understanding Your Drug Crime Charges

Under New Jersey law, drug charges can range in severity from simple marijuana possession (50 grams or less) to trafficking in large amounts of certain drugs, such as heroin, which can lead to a 20-year prison sentence.

What’s the Difference Between Indictable Offenses and Felonies in New Jersey’s Criminal Code?

Most states classify more serious drug charges as felonies and less severe ones as misdemeanors. The New Jersey criminal code, however, differentiates drug charges in the following way:

indictable offenses

Indictable offenses are similar to felonies and the most serious crimes in New Jersey. Penalties for indictable crimes may include mandatory minimum prison sentences.

disorderly person offenses

Disorderly persons Offenses are similar to misdemeanors in other states. These are typically punished with a fine and are unlikely to include jail time for first-time offenders.

Expert Criminal Defense Against All Types of New Jersey Drug Charges

Regardless of the complexity of your case or the severity of the charges against you, the Peyrouton Law firm understands the nuances of drug laws, and our legal team will craft an effective and aggressive defense to fight for your rights.

Common types of drug offenses we handle include:

Simple Drug Possession Charges

Drug possession is the most common drug charge in New Jersey. They involve the illegal possession of controlled dangerous substances (CDS). Depending on the type and amount of the CDS involved, possession charges can range from low-level disorderly person offenses (misdemeanors) to indictable crimes (felonies), which can carry prison time.

Drug Paraphernalia

Drug paraphernalia possession is a disorderly persons offense in New Jersey. The most common paraphernalia includes pipes, bongs, syringes, rolling papers, and other commonly used items to consume or package controlled substances.

Drug Possession with Intent to Distribute

Possession with intent to distribute controlled substances is a more serious offense than simple possession and carries harsher penalties — including mandatory prison sentences. Intent to distribute can be established by the volume of drugs or by the packaging or presence of drug paraphernalia found with the CDS.

Manufacturing and Drug Distribution Charges

Manufacturing and drug distribution charges are much more severe than simple possession and often involve multiple counts of various drug charges. These offenses can lead to hefty fines, lengthy prison sentences, and other penalties.

Drug Trafficking (AKA: Kingpin Charges)

Being charged with being a drug kingpin in New Jersey is a serious offense, as it means an individual is the leader of a drug trafficking organization. Penalties for a conviction can include life imprisonment. If you are facing trafficking charges, it is critical to obtain legal counsel from a skilled defense attorney as soon as possible.

Drug Conspiracy Charges

Drug conspiracy charges are similar to kingpin charges but may not involve the same level of criminal involvement. Under New Jersey law, a conspiracy occurs when two or more people agree to commit a drug crime. Even if a person does not directly participate in criminal activity, they can still receive a conspiracy charge.

Federal Offenses

Trafficking and conspiracy charges that involve interstate or international activity may be prosecuted under federal law. These offenses are punishable by much harsher penalties than those imposed at the state level. 

If you have been charged with a federal drug offense, it’s critical to retain an attorney with deep knowledge of federal drug laws and procedures.

It’s important to note that other aggravating factors can contribute to more serious state or federal charges and additional penalties. These can include:

How New Jersey Classifies Different Controlled Dangerous Substances (CDS) for Criminal Offenses

New Jersey law uses the definitions created by US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to classify controlled dangerous substances (CDS) into five “schedules.”

According to the DEA, a Schedule I controlled dangerous substance is defined as having “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.” These include:

  • Heroin
  • LSD
  • Marijuana (cannabis)
  • Ecstasy (MDMA)
  • Methaqualone
  • Peyote

Although the state of New Jersey allows for the legal sale and use of marijuana for residents who are 21 and older — it is still classified as a Schedule I controlled dangerous substance under federal law.

The DEA defines Schedule II drugs as having “a high potential for abuse, with use potentially leading to severe psychological or physical dependence.” These include:

  • Cocaine
  • Methamphetamine
  • Morphine
  • Oxycodone
  • Ritalin
  • Adderall

Schedule III drugs are defined as having “a moderate to low potential for physical and psychological dependence.” These include:

  • Ketamine
  • Anabolic steroids
  • Testosterone

The DEA defines Schedule IV drugs as having “a low potential for abuse and low risk of dependence.” These include:

  • Xanax
  • Valium
  • Tramadol
  • Ambien

According to the DEA, Schedule V drugs have “the lowest potential for abuse and typically contain limited quantities of certain narcotics.” These include:

  • Robitussin AC
  • Lomotil
  • Motofen
  • Lyrica

Penalties & Consequences of Indictable Drug Crimes in New Jersey

In New Jersey, the penalties for indictable crimes depend on the degree of the offense for which you are charged. Prosecutors determine the crime’s degree using several factors, including:

  • the type and amount of controlled substances involved
  • the purpose of the possession or distribution (e.g., personal use or sale)
  • the presence of any aggravating circumstances (e.g., involvement of minors or possession of a firearm)


For example:

  • Someone convicted of a first-degree crime may face 10-20 years in federal prison and fines up to $200,000.
  • Someone convicted of a second-degree crime may face 5-10 years in prison and fines up to $150,000.
  • Someone convicted of a third-degree crime may face 3-5 years in prison and fines up to $15,000.
  • Someone convicted of a fourth-degree crime may face up to 18 months in jail and fines of up to $10,000.
  • Someone convicted of a disorderly person offense may face up to six months in prison and fines of up to $1,000.


In addition to the serious penalties drug offenders face, drug crimes have serious collateral consequences that can last a lifetime. A criminal record of a drug conviction — even if it does not result in prison time — can lead to difficulty finding employment and housing and extra scrutiny from law enforcement.

A skilled drug crimes lawyer can help you understand the charges and penalties you may face. An experienced attorney can also explain your options for avoiding or minimizing the consequences of a drug crime conviction.

Potential Defenses Against Drug Crime Charges

If you are facing drug charges, a skilled criminal defense attorney will explore a variety of defenses to help negotiate reduced charges, a favorable plea deal, or even a complete dismissal of your drug case. 

Common defenses against drug charges include:

CONTACT US
Picture of Attorney Alan G. Peyrouton
Attorney Alan G. Peyrouton
Alan Peyrouton is a top-rated criminal defense lawyer based in Hackensack, New Jersey. The founding partner of Peyrouton Law, he defends clients accused of crimes in Bergen County and throughout Northern New Jersey. Whether handling the most complicated or routine cases — Mr. Peyrouton consistently receives five-star reviews from satisfied clients, reflecting his unwavering dedication to his profession.

How to Choose The Best New Drug Crime Attorney for Your Case

Hiring the right criminal defense attorney is crucial for safeguarding your future, as a skilled lawyer can make the difference between an acquittal and a conviction or probation and a lengthy prison term. When searching for a New Jersey drug crime lawyer, it is important to seek out an experienced attorney who can offer personalized attention and aggressively pursue the best legal outcome.

Questions to ask when choosing your
New Jersey drug crime attorney

For peace of mind, you must be confident that you’ve hired the right criminal defense lawyer. During consultations with prospective attorneys, here are a few questions you might want to ask them:

That last question is crucial because a large law firm might have multiple criminal defense attorneys. So be sure to ask if the lawyer you meet during your consultation is the one who gets assigned to your case.

Lastly, when choosing a Hackensack criminal lawyer, remember that you are hiring them to defend you. If you don’t feel comfortable with this person, move on!

Ready To Fight Your Drug Charges? Here’s What New Jersey Drug Crimes Lawyer Attorney Alan Peyrouton Can Do for You.

Whether you’re facing a disorderly person offense or serious drug trafficking charges — we can help you navigate the legal process and fight for your rights and freedom.

The sooner you hire an experienced legal representation, the better your chances of a successful outcome for your criminal drug case. Contact our law office at (201) 546-5881 or info@peyroutonlaw.com to schedule your free consultation today.

When you hire attorney Alan Peyrouton, you will get:

alan at work3

FAQs About New Jersey Drug Crimes

Hiring a knowledgeable New Jersey drug crime attorney will give you the best odds of successfully fighting your drug charges. An experienced lawyer will be able to review all aspects of your case and build a strong defense strategy that works to protect your rights. They can also work with prosecutors to negotiate reduced drug charges or plea deals and even argue for a complete dismissal of your case.

For many years, marijuana possession and distribution has been the most common drug offense in New Jersey. But since 2010, the state legalized marijuana for medical use, and in 2021, the state’s governor signed a bill to legalize it for recreational use. As marijuana possession is no longer illegal — the most common drug crimes in New Jersey are now related to the possession and distribution of opioids, cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine.

The cost of hiring a criminal defense lawyer will depend on the complexity of your case and the severity of the charges. A typical criminal defense law office charges an hourly rate plus court costs, and some may require a retainer fee. For more information, call New Jersey drug defense lawyer Alan Peyrouton for a free consultation at (201) 686-9538.

Most defense attorneys will answer this question with a decisive “no.” But here’s another way to look at it. If you want to increase your odds of being found guilty and receiving the harshest possible sentence in your drug case, then representing yourself is a good idea. However, if you want the best chance of obtaining an acquittal, reduced charges, or a lesser sentence — you should hire an experienced criminal lawyer.

Compared with many other states, New Jersey’s drug sentencing laws offer various options beyond traditional incarceration, such as conditional discharge and community service. These alternatives can benefit low-level or first-time drug offenders, as they allow individuals to receive treatment and rehabilitation while continuing to live and work in their communities.

The state also has an early intervention program for individuals at risk of developing a substance use disorder, which aims to prevent drug-related crimes and reduce recidivism.

Yes. A criminal conviction related to a controlled substance can lead to deportation or inadmissibility, depending on the defendant’s immigration status. So if you are not a citizen of the United States, a drug crime conviction could result in removal from the country or your inability to gain entry into the US. If you’ve been charged with a drug offense, immediately seek legal help from an experienced criminal defense attorney who understands the complexities of US immigration and drug laws.

It depends on the offense. For example, a conviction for a first-degree crime — such as murder, rape, or large-scale drug distribution — can carry sentences of up to life in prison. Lower-end disorderly person offenses, such as the simple possession of 50 grams or less of a controlled dangerous substance (CDS), are punishable by up to 6 months in prison. The penalties for most New Jersey criminal cases will fall somewhere in between. An experienced criminal defense attorney can advise you of the potential penalties for your particular case.

It depends on the facts of your case and the prosecutor’s discretion. Your criminal defense lawyer will review your options, from plea bargaining to dismissal, and advise you of the best course. In some cases, your attorney may recommend taking your case to trial if the prosecution’s case is weak.

Yes. In New Jersey, you can petition the court to have your criminal record expunged — or sealed. While each case is unique, a skilled criminal defense lawyer can help you determine whether you are eligible for an expungement and explain the process of petitioning the court.

What Our Clients Say About Our Law Firm

Peyrouton Law
4.9
Based on 276 reviews
Alysa Melero
Alysa Melero
1718736824
Makes a great confidant argument,and is such a comfort to have on our side!
Haitian Bokor Leonard Elmera
Haitian Bokor Leonard Elmera
1718408623
This guy deserves 10 stars he works and is assertive. He is a heavy weight champ in the court room BEST LAWYER EVER he worked on my girlfriend’s case and got a her a victory. He is very meticulous and orderly in his defense. This guy is outstanding. 🥊 BEST LAWYER EVER !
MetalBabe87 Metal High Priestess
MetalBabe87 Metal High Priestess
1718401673
I hired Al, for a Domestic Violence Situation. In the court system. He was beyond helpful. Very open and receptive. Communication was absolute key with him. He kept me in the know every email every text message. Communication was on point!He was and is very passionate. Leads with integrity boldness and truth. I have never seen so much tenacity in person. He was beyond helpful - explaining situations in the court system that I should expect.I highly recommend him. I will recommend him to any of my clients as well. He is absolutely excellent and straightforward. Definitely pushes the envelope and applies the pressure as a true lawyer should.Once again, I will absolutely recommend him for any cases in the future. An absolutely recommend him to friends and family. I hope to work with him again under better circumstances.Thank you so much - for your patience, guidance and help. You have been absolutely wonderful to work with.
Yvette Bariffe
Yvette Bariffe
1718395085
Navigating the criminal justice system can be a daunting and intimidating experience. However, Peyrouton Law demonstrates an exceptional ability to guide clients through this complex world with the utmost professionalism. The firm embodies a comprehensive combination of knowledge, experience, tenacity, and effective representation. When my 22-year-old son, who resides in Chicago but works in New Jersey, inadvertently neglected to place his legally registered firearm in his checked luggage, he found himself facing arrest. As a mother residing in Chicago, I was overwhelmed with fear and uncertainty, being unfamiliar with New Jersey's criminal justice system. Upon reaching out to Peyrouton Law, they diligently represented my son throughout his legal challenge, alleviating my anxiety and providing much-needed reassurance. I wholeheartedly endorse and recommend this exceptional law firm.
Anji Gomez
Anji Gomez
1718143485
El mejor abogado que pude aver encontrado cada audiencia me sentí confiada porque sabía que todo iba salir bien no ablo inglés y también mejor abogado en abla español súper bueno de confianza y pudo quitarme los cargos de los cuales estaba acusada lo recomiendo
jessica janicek
jessica janicek
1718121038
Jesus Temple
Jesus Temple
1717651101
I am very pleased with the choice I made, when I choose Peyrouton Law Firm. Allan is such a great person and listens to you carefully and applied pressure to your case.
Adrian Williams
Adrian Williams
1717650815
Allan has the best criminal attorney in New Jersey, he's a man of his word. If you in need of a criminal attorney search no more, here's one right here Peyrouton Law Firm.......
Bruce Mandell
Bruce Mandell
1717650349
Best lawyer there is hands down💙❤️💙
God is love
God is love
1717519337
Alan is a great experience good attorney hard working man 👨 looking for a good criminal lawyer Alan is the boss ❤️
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Call to Speak with an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney Today

When you meet with Mr. Peyrouton during your free initial consultation, he will listen to your story with compassion. He will then carefully assess your legal situation and explain your options to help you make informed decisions about your case.

Call (201) 686-9538 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.

Peyrouton Law will aggressively defend you against all criminal allegations and work to get the best possible outcome for your criminal case.

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