Transporting CDS With Intent to Distribute in Oklahoma – Law & Punishment

arrested transportation cds oklahomaIt’s illegal to transport a controlled dangerous substance (CDS) with intent to distribute that CDS in Oklahoma. The official definition of “distribute a CDS” is to “deliver other than by administering or dispensing a controlled dangerous substance.” “Deliver” or “delivery” means the actual, constructive, or attempted transfer of a CDS from one person to another. This applies regardless of whether there’s an agency relationship.

There’s no minimum quantity of drugs required to be charged with this crime. A prosecutor isn’t required to establish that any traceable or specific usable quantity of a prohibited narcotic substance was involved. The quantity of the drug involved does not need to be sufficient to produce a stimulating or depressing effect on the nervous system. There’s no requirement that a sale occur. While a sale will certainly count as “distribution,” no money needs to be exchanged to be found guilty of this crime. Therefore, the prohibited conduct includes not only dealing and selling, but also sharing with or dividing among persons any contraband drug. The element of compensation is irrelevant. Merely giving illegal drugs to someone is enough to constitute the commission of this crime.

Possession of CDS

In order to transport a CDS, the accused must possess the CDS. There must be a knowing and intentional possession of the substance and the specific intent to distribute it. 

To prove possession, actual physical custody of a controlled substance is not required. The prosecutor merely needs to demonstrate constructive possession of the drugs. Constructive possession is both knowledge of the drug’s presence as well as the power and intent to control its use or disposition. The
element of possession is established when the contraband is found on premises possessed by the defendant and under his exclusive control.

Possession doesn’t have to be exclusive. Someone may be deemed to be in “joint possession” of a drug that’s in the physical custody of a companion, if the two willfully and knowingly share the right to control the drug. However, mere proximity to contraband is insufficient to establish control. Whether the prosecutor alleges sole or joint possession, evidence in addition to a defendant’s presence at a place where drugs are possessed or used must be shown to demonstrate knowledge and control. A defendant’s knowledge and right of control may be established by circumstantial evidence. Knowledge and control of a drug can be shown through the defendant’s incriminating statements or conduct or prior police investigation. Proof of knowledge and control is insufficient when the only factor in addition to the defendant’s physical proximity to the drugs is that the drug was located in an extremely confined area (such as inside of a car).

In addition to possession, the specific intent of the defendant to distribute the drugs hast to be established. The element of specific intent to distribute the drugs is a fact question for the jury. There’s various things a jury can look at to determine this such as the amount of the drugs found, the presence or sale of paraphernalia, individual packaging, and the presence of cash.

Penalty for Transporting a Controlled Dangerous Substance With Intent to Distribute in Oklahoma

This crime is a felony. The penalties are listed below.

Any Schedule I or II substance (except marijuana):

 Prison TimeFine
1st OffenseUp to 7 yearsUp to $100,000
2nd OffenseUp to 14 yearsN/A
3rd+ OffenseUp to 20 yearsN/A

Any CDS in Schedules III, IV, and V, including marijuana:

 Prison TimeFine
1st OffenseUp to 5 years≤$20,000
2nd OffenseUp to 10 yearsN/A
3rd OffenseUp to 15 yearsN/A

Using a Child to Transport With Intent to Distribute a CDS

The punishment for transportation of a CDS with intent to distribute is more severe for anyone 18 or older uses or solicits the use of services of someone under 18.

 Prison
1st Offense2-10 yrs
2nd Offense4-20 yrs
3rd+ Offense10 yrs-life

Transporting With Intent to Distribute a CDS Near a School, Park, Housing Project, or Child Care Facility

Transporting a CDS with intent to distribute in, on, or within within 2,000 ft of the real property comprising a public or private elementary or secondary school, public vocational school, public or private college or university, or other institution of higher education, recreation center or public park, including state parks and recreation areas, public housing project, or child care facility dramatically increases the punishment. Depending on the situation, the term of imprisonment will double or triple the punishment for distributing not near those locations.

Punishment when there’s not additional aggravating factors:

 PrisonFine
1st Offense≤ 14 yrs≤ $00,000
2nd+ Offense≤ 42 yrsN/A

Punishment when using a child to transport with intent to distribute a CDS:

 PrisonFine
1st Offense4-20 yrs≤ $50,000
2nd+ Offense12-60 yrsN/A

Anyone convicted of a second and subsequent violation of this law isn’t eligible for a suspended sentence, deferred sentence, or probation.

Sources: 63 O.S. § 2-401 & 63 O.S. § 2-101

Current as of April 1, 2020. Laws are subject to change at any time! Go to the sources cited above for the most up-to-date law.

Charged with a transportation of a CDS with intent to distribute in Oklahoma? Call Oklahoma drug lawyer Frank Urbanic in OKC at 405-633-3420.

Don’t panic! Call Urbanic.® 405-633-3420