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Manufacturing Drugs

It can be a daunting experience to stand accused of any form of drug crime. If you have been charged with a drug crime in Pasadena, California, you could face hefty charges if convicted, depending on the circumstances of the case levied against you. We invite you to contact the Pasadena Criminal Attorney for your chances of obtaining a favorable outcome in court. We specialize in criminal defense for a wide range of criminal offenses, including manufacturing drugs.

Manufacturing as Defined Under the California Laws

The California Health and Safety Code states that anyone who manufactures, compounds, converts, produces, derives, processes, or prepares any controlled substance specified by law, either independently through chemical fusion or directly or indirectly by chemical extraction any controlled substance is guilty of crime and shall be punished by imprisonment.

A controlled substance is a drug that is regulated under the United States Controlled Substances Act regardless of whether it is a Schedule I, Schedule II, Schedule III, Schedule IV, or Schedule V.

Drugs are manufactured to enable drug users to get the drugs at a lesser cost, to have access to drugs that are harder to acquire, or to be sold for profit.

Manufactured drugs may include:

  • Ecstasy
  • Methamphetamines
  • Crack cocaine
  • PCP (Phencyclidine)
  • LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide)
  • Marijuana concentrates
  • Heroin

Production of any restricted narcotic or illicit drug is an unlawful activity in the state of California, and anyone who participates in these activities may face charges for drug manufacturing. There are certain exceptions to drug manufacture, such as permitted marijuana cultivation under certain limitations for medicinal purposes or personal consumption.

If an individual has the authorization to cultivate personal or medicinal marijuana, he or she may do so provided the quantity does not exceed the county or state limits. Growing marijuana for medicinal reasons became allowed in California in 1996.

Following modifications in involvement with California state residents, this expanded to personal usage as well. This authorization and legal expansion, however, does not apply to other illegal drugs.

Other chemicals, such as methamphetamines and PCP, are not permitted to be processed in California. While they may be regulated in limited ways, such as prescribed drugs supplied by a doctor, it is not legal to produce the drugs without the state government's approval.

If a person is found in possession of these ingredients with the apparent aim of producing narcotics, he or she will be charged with a crime in the state. It is critical to have a criminal defense lawyer on your side to help you fight these allegations and establish that there was no intention of producing the drugs.

Health issues, deadly catastrophes, and environmental damage can result from the combination of dangerous chemicals, improper lab settings, and unskilled hands. Some of the ingredients used to make these drugs are so lethal that just having them in your possession is dangerous.

Controlled Substances Act

Drugs are classified under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) in the United States based on their medical purposes, the possibility for abuse, and degree of safety. Controlled substances in the United States are monitored by the federal government.

Many people, however, have objected to how individual medications are classified under this act. Marijuana is still classified as Schedule I, the same classification as heroin, even though it is allowed for medical and recreational purposes in California.

The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) has five schedules of controlled substances. Schedule I drugs are typically thought to be the most harmful, whereas Schedule V substances are seen to be the least harmful.

  • Schedule I drugs are those that have no legitimate medical use and have a high potential for misuse. LSD and marijuana are all examples of this.
  • Schedule II drugs have a strong potential for abuse as well as a currently recognized medicinal usefulness. Morphine and methamphetamines are examples.
  • Schedule III drugs have a recognized medical purpose, although they are deemed safer than Schedule I or II drugs and have a potential for abuse. Steroids, antidepressants, and appetite suppressants are among the most regularly recommended medications.
  • Schedule IV drugs are thought to have a lower abuse and dependence potential than the other schedules. Prescription medicines such as Xanax, Ativan, and prescription cough medicine are among them.
  • Schedule V drugs have a lower potential for abuse than Schedule IV drugs. These drugs may be used for anti-diarrhea or antitussive purposes.

Penalties for Drug Manufacturing in California

If you are convicted of manufacturing drugs, you could face a term of three, five, or even seven years, and a fine of up to $50,000 according to the law. Penalties for illegal drug manufacturing in California are harsh. Some reasons that can result in increased penalties include:

  • Previous drug-related convictions
  • Causing a fatality or serious bodily injury to other persons
  • Manufacturing prohibited drugs around children
  • Manufacturing substantial amounts of controlled substances

Previous Convictions

If you have a history of drug-related convictions, you may face a harsher sentence. For each prior conviction, whether for carrying out the crime or for being involved, three years might be added to your prison term. Previous crimes that would increase your sentence include:

  • Possession of a prohibited drug with the purpose of selling
  • Transporting and selling of a controlled substance
  • Manufacturing of a controlled substance
  • Manufacturing within 200 feet of a home or structure where another person was present

Causing Death or Serious Bodily Harm

If another individual is wounded or killed while you are manufacturing, you may face further penalties. For each person who is injured or killed as a result of your manufacturing process, one year is added to your sentence. You will serve each year in succession. Although, if the injured or deceased individual was an accomplice, you will not face any increased penalties.

Manufacturing Substantial Quantities of Controlled Substances

If you are convicted of manufacturing a substantial quantity of controlled substances such as methamphetamine, PCP, and GHB, you will face additional penalties. Any of these manufactured substances in large quantities will result in additional prison time.

The enhancements of this conviction are:

  • You will be sentenced to an extra three years if the substance surpasses three liters of liquid by volume or one pound of solid substances by weight.
  • If the substance is more than 10 gallons of liquid by volume or three pounds of solid substance by weight, the defendant will be sentenced to a five-year extension.
  • If the substance's volume or weight surpasses 25 gallons of liquid or 10 pounds of solid substance, the defendant will be sentenced to an extra ten years.
  • The defendant will be sentenced to an extra 15 years if the substance surpasses 105 gallons of liquid by volume or 44 pounds of solid substance by weight.

Making Controlled Substances in the Presence of Children

Finally, if you produce methamphetamine close to minors, you will also face harsh penalties. You will be sentenced to an additional two years in state prison if you are guilty of making methamphetamine while an individual of 16 years or below was there at that moment in time of the offense.

The extra time sentence must run consequently as your main sentence. If a minor of 16 years or below is seriously injured as a result of your manufacturing activities, you will be sentenced to an extra five years in prison. 

Possible Defenses

Numerous defenses may apply to your case. Eventually, it depends on how you and your legal representative will go over the details of your charges to figure out which defenses are best for you.

There are several defenses that your attorney can use in your case:

  • Unreasonable search
  • You did not participate in the manufacturing process
  • You did not initiate the manufacturing process
  • Entrapment
  • A proper alibi
  • Innocence
  • Mistaken facts
  • Coercion
  • Statute of limitations
  • Withdrawal

Unreasonable Search

According to the constitution of the United States, the government shields you from unlawful search and apprehension of your property. As a result, the investigating authorities are only allowed to search the defendant if they have a proper warrant. Only if there is sufficient evidence to support the offense can a police officer apprehend a suspect.

Regardless of whether you are found guilty of making a drug, the state will not be able to utilize evidence obtained through an unlawful search against you in court. This law prevents the state prosecutors from making use of unlawfully obtained evidence by prohibiting its use or reference at trial.

You did not Participate in Manufacturing Process

This is an obvious defense that may prove you were not involved in any way with the manufacturing of the substance. It is likely you were near an illegal drug manufacturing facility even though you were not involved in the process.

It is also likely that you were in a communal place and were unaware that illegal drugs were being made nearby. Your defense attorney will assess the case to see if this is applicable in your situation.

You did not initiate the Manufacturing Process

Although the California law makes it illegal to manufacture illegal drugs, it does not have any policies against any activities done before the manufacturing process. This includes, for example, the buying and assembly of necessary ingredients.

You may have a defense to making a controlled substance if you had not obtained all of the essential components or set up the appropriate equipment.

Proving this argument can be challenging; you need a skilled criminal defense lawyer to make this defense viable for your case. Although, if you had in your possession chemicals that are prohibited substances themselves, you could be charged with a different felony.

False Accusation

False accusation occurs when:

  • You are wrongly identified as the offender by an eyewitness
  • Vengeance from a third party
  • An attempt to avoid criminal responsibility
  • The court receives information from an untrustworthy informant or law enforcement official


Entrapment is defined as a circumstance in which a "usually law-abiding person" is persuaded to commit a crime that he or she would not have committed otherwise.

If a police officer or anyone else utilized the following to entice you to do the alleged act, it might be considered entrapment:

  • Force
  • Blackmail
  • Flattery
  • Intimidation
  • Threats

This legal defense is viable if the accused can demonstrate that he or she performed an unlawful act solely as a result of entrapment.


This is the simplest legal defense that exempts you from criminal penalties. You will contend that you did not conduct any of the alleged crimes in this situation. You are not required to prove anything, but you should present documents or other evidence to back up your claim of innocence.


This is a form of affirmative defense. In this situation, you must establish the defense by demonstrating that you were not at the crime scene.

To establish this type of legal defense, you will need witness testimony, restaurant receipts, surveillance footage of your movements, or phone records to show where you were at the time of the incident.

The Mistake of Facts

The accused may be completely oblivious of the elements of the offense for which he or she has been accused. This legal defense frequently applies where the chemicals used in the purported manufacture of drugs were not prohibited substances. They would probably have comparable chemical compositions, which is why they are mixed up.


Another sort of defense that can be used when accused of manufacturing a controlled substance is duress, often known as coercion. Someone must have threatened you with force, violence, or threats to your family, causing you to produce the drugs, according to this legal argument.

This type of situation is typical in drug crimes, particularly when a group of individuals gets involved in criminal drug actions, such as the mafias.


This defense is used when the accused contemplated manufacturing the drugs but afterward decided not to do so. Your lawyer must show that you successfully deserted or withdrew from the act by stopping the manufacturing process from being completed.

Statute of Limitations

This only applies when the prosecutor's opportunity for filing charges has passed and the prosecutor is no longer able to bring the matter to court. The statute of limitations for manufacturing restricted drugs is three years because it is a felony punishable by up to seven years in prison. As a result, if a case is filed after three years of investigation, you have the right to petition the court to drop the accusations.

Crimes Associated to the Manufacture of Controlled Substances

The manufacture of controlled chemicals is linked to five offenses. The controlled substance, which is present in all of these crimes, is the common element. The following are examples of offenses linked to the manufacturing of controlled substances:

Possession of a Controlled Substance with the Intent of Selling

Possession of a controlled substance is unlawful under the Health and Safety Code 11351. It also makes it illegal to buy certain medicines that are for sale, such as codeine without a valid prescription from a doctor. To successfully condemn someone under this statute, a prosecutor must prove either of the following:

  • You bought or had possession of the drug
  • You were well aware that the substance was controlled
  • The drugs were sufficient for use or sale
  • You had the illegal drugs in your possession intending to resell them, or you had purchased the drugs intending to resell them.

Possession of a controlled substance with the intent to sell it is a felony punishable by probation in a county jail for up to a year is possible. Two, three, or four years in state prison and a fine of $20,000 are also possible sentences.

If you are caught in possession of a controlled substance like cocaine, you might be charged with an additional penalty in the following ways:

  • If the controlled substance weighs more than a kilogram, the sentence is extended to three years.
  • If it weighs more than four kilograms, you will be sentenced to five years in prison.
  • If the material weighs more than 10 kilograms, the sentence time is increased to ten years.
  • If the controlled substance weighs more than twenty kilograms, the sentence is increased to fifteen years.
  • If the drug weighs more than forty kilograms, the sentence is increased to twenty years.
  • If the controlled substance weighs more than eighty kilograms, the sentence is increased to twenty-five years.
  • If you receive an additional term as a result of one of the above-mentioned weight enhancements, you may also be subject to a fine of up to $80,000 and you are at risk of three more years added to your sentence if you had prior convictions involving drug crimes.

Possession of a Controlled Substance for Distribution and Sale

It is against the California law to sell or transport controlled substances like cocaine, or heroin, according to Health and Safety Code 11352. The following activities are prohibited under this statute:

  • Distributing a controlled substance.
  • Transportation of a restricted substance for resale
  • Providing or administering medications to others
  • Giving away a medication
  • Offering to perform any of the aforementioned actions

Violation of HS 11352 is a felony, with the following penalties:

  • Formal probation
  • Under California's realignment scheme, you can spend three, four, or five years in county jail, or you can spend three, six, or nine years behind bars
  • A maximum fine of $20,000.

Running a Drug House

It is illegal to open or maintain a place to supply, give away, or permit other individuals to consume a drug continuously at such a location, according to California Health and Safety Code 11366.

A 'place' is commonly defined as a house or an apartment under this regulation, though it does not need to be one of those two. It could also be a motel.

Please keep in mind that an offender is guilty under HS 11366 if the 'location' was opened and maintained with the intent of allowing others to consume the drugs. Keeping a place for your use does not make you a criminal, but it can help you get a conviction for drug possession.

Prosecutions under HS 11366 are wobblers, meaning they can result in a misdemeanor or felony penalty. If you are found guilty of a misdemeanor, you may face the following penalties:

  • A year in county jail
  • A maximum fine of $1,000

If you are convicted of a felony, you could face the following penalties:

  • A sentence to sixteen months, two years, or three years in a California state prison
  • A maximum fine of $10,000 is possible

Acquiring a Place to Distribute Controlled Substances

Renting or leasing a room, area, or structure with the intention of manufacturing or selling drugs is criminalized under California Health and Safety Code 11366.5.

Possessing Ingredients and Equipment Required for the Manufacture of Controlled Substances

It is prohibited to possess certain types of chemicals to utilize them to manufacture a controlled substance according to California Health and Safety Code 11383. Violation of HS 11383 is a felony in California, with the following penalties:

  • Formal probation
  • You may be sentenced to two, four, or six years in county jail
  • A maximum fine of $10,000 is possible
  • If the substance used to create the above-mentioned drugs is discovered in a structure where a kid under the age of sixteen is present, you will be sentenced to two subsequent years in jail
  • Five years in prison if the substance used to make the drugs caused serious bodily harm to a person under the age of sixteen 

Find a Drugs Crime Attorney Near Me

You need someone with extensive legal experience to defend you against drug manufacturing charges. State prosecutors take drug manufacturing crimes seriously and being convicted can ruin your reputation as well as your life. While the prosecutor needs to prove that you are guilty of these charges, you need an attorney who is knowledgeable with California criminal statutes and how the court system works.

If you have been charged with manufacturing drugs in Pasadena, call the Pasadena Criminal Attorney at 626-689-2277. We are prepared to assess your case and devise a defense plan that may result in your case being dismissed or your penalties reduced.

How Can We Help? 626-689-2277 

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