Is Having Drug Paraphernalia the Same as Being Caught with Drugs?

 Posted on March 24,2023 in Drug Crimes

IL defense lawyerYou are probably aware that in Illinois it is against the law to possess illegal drugs such as cocaine or heroin. But did you know that even without the presence of uncontrolled substances, you could find yourself facing drug charges? If you are arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia you could have a legal battle ahead. At Scott F. Anderson, Attorney at Law, we have worked with many people in similar situations and are here to help you navigate through this stressful situation.

What Items Could be Labeled Drug Paraphernalia?

Under the Drug Paraphernalia Control Act, drug paraphernalia includes items that are designed to among other things, consume, package, or store illegal drugs. Here are some examples of drug paraphernalia:

  • Bongs or water pipes
  • Syringes
  • Scales to weigh drug amounts
  • Small plastic bags
  • Sifters used to prepare the drugs

These are items that could be utilized in daily life. You need a skilled attorney who will work to obtain favorable results by investigating the arrest and the details of your case. Right now, a proposed bill is being considered to give pharmacists and stores the green light to sell fentanyl test strips over the counter. Currently, these strips are also considered drug paraphernalia. County health departments would distribute the strips for free in the fight against drugs laced with fentanyl.

Reasonable Doubt and Drug Paraphernalia

Under the law, possession of drug paraphernalia is a crime when someone knows or should have a reasonable idea that the object is used to prepare or consume illegal drugs. The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the person intended to use the item in drug-related activities. The circumstances in your case may not be black and white. There are situations during an arrest in which there may be drugs present near the drug paraphernalia. The prosecution will use this as evidence of someone’s intention to consume drugs or knowledge of the drug-related items. Only a skilled attorney will know what to look for and try to help you build a strong defense. There may be a way to reduce the charges or have the case dismissed, depending on the circumstances of each case.


Possession of drug paraphernalia in the state is considered a misdemeanor and can lead to up to one year in jail and carries a fine of up to $2,500. If the drug paraphernalia is used to inject a minor, it is considered a Class 4 felony and can lead to one to three years behind bars and a heftier fine of up to $25,000. If someone dies as a result of being injected with a controlled substance it is a Class 3 felony and can lead to two to five years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000.

Contact a Rolling Meadows, IL, Drug Crimes Lawyer

If you have been charged with possession of drug paraphernalia you need an experienced Arlington Heights, IL, criminal defense attorney to help you fight back. Contact Scott F. Anderson, Attorney at Law, for a free consultation. Call 847-253-3400 to explore your options and understand how we can try to help you negotiate a favorable outcome.



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