Ecstasy Charges in Orange County and Riverside
Representing criminal defendants accused of selling or possessing MDMA in Southern California
Ecstasy, also marketed as Molly, is a synthetic drug that combines the properties of a stimulant and a mild hallucinogen. Despite a crackdown that began in 2010 after the death of a 15-year-old girl at a Los Angeles rave was attributed to an Ecstasy overdose, Ecstasy use has grown in Southern California.
Ecstasy arrests have also increased. According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, more kilogram-quantity seizures of Ecstasy occur in California than in any other state. While the DEA focuses on “high priority??? targets (primarily large distributors), state and local police agencies across California make daily arrests for crimes involving the sale and possession of Ecstasy.
If you have been arrested for a crime involving Ecstasy, an experienced Ecstasy defense attorney can help you minimize or avoid the consequences of a conviction. To tell us about your case and to discuss your options with one of Southern California’s leading drug crime defense lawyers, call The Law Offices of Randy Collins at (888) 250-2865.
Ecstasy in California
The chemical name for Ecstasy is MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine). A supposedly purer form of the drug is marketed as Molly. Nearly all Ecstasy sold in the United States is manufactured in Belgium.
Ecstasy gives users energy, producing an effect that is similar to amphetamine use while inducing a sense of euphoria and enhancing feelings of empathy. Ecstasy also distorts the sense of time and magnifies pleasurable sensations. Because Ecstasy makes users feel a strong connection to other people, it became the club drug of choice beginning in the late 1980s.
While Ecstasy continues to be a popular party drug, its recreational use has expanded beyond music festivals and nightclubs. Many California drug users have turned to Ecstasy as their drug of choice in all settings.
The risks associated with Ecstasy use are difficult to quantify. Ecstasy is often taken in combination with alcohol and other drugs, including ketamine, cocaine, GHB, and Viagra. The various combinations of drugs carry greater risks than using Ecstasy alone. In addition, even when distributors claim to be selling “pure??? Ecstasy, the drug is often adulterated with other chemicals, including methamphetamine, dextromethorphan (a cough suppressant), and synthetic cathinones (the psychoactive ingredients in drugs marketed as “bath salts???).
Taken alone, MDMA occasionally impairs the body’s ability to regulate temperature, leading to dangerous overheating and water retention. Ecstasy users who feel they can “dance all night??? too often ignore the warning signs if those problems develop. Ecstasy also produces the effects that are common to amphetamines, including elevated heart rates and blood pressure. Those effects might be dangerous for some users.
Defense of all California Ecstasy crimes
The Law Offices of Randy Collins assists individuals who are arrested or prosecuted for all California crimes involving Ecstasy, including:
- Sale, importation, or transportation of Ecstasy. Section 11379 of California’s Health and Safety Code makes it a felony to sell, furnish, or administer Ecstasy to another person. That means that giving the drug to a friend in a club for free is the same crime as selling Ecstasy. A conviction carries a maximum prison sentence of four years. The same penalty applies to importing Ecstasy (bringing it into the state). Transporting Ecstasy for the purpose of furnishing it to someone else also carries the same penalty, although the maximum sentence increases to nine years if Ecstasy is transported across more than two counties.
- Possession of Ecstasy for sale. Possessing Ecstasy with the intent to sell it violates section 11378 HS. That felony carries a maximum sentence of three years.
- Possession of Ecstasy for personal use. Possessing Ecstasy for your own use violates section 11377 HS. Thanks to Prop 47, that crime is now a misdemeanor. The maximum sentence is one year in jail.
- Driving under the influence of Ecstasy. Driving under the influence of any drug, including Ecstasy, subjects the driver to DUI penalties that depend upon the driver’s history of prior DUI convictions. Those penalties can affect your driving privileges as well as your freedom.
California Ecstasy law is in a state of confusion, with some judges regarding Ecstasy as an analog of methamphetamine and thus subject to the penalties noted above, while other judges are less certain. A bill to remedy the confusion would classify MDMA as a Schedule II controlled substance in California, but until that bill passes, the uncertainty as to whether Ecstasy is actually illegal presents opportunities for raising creative defenses to Ecstasy charges.
Other defenses include:
- Mistaken identity
- A deliberately false accusation, perhaps to protect the accuser’s dealer
- The drugs were planted to set up the accused for a drug arrest
- The accused was near Ecstasy but did not actually possess it
- Ecstasy was found during an illegal search
- Ecstasy was possessed for personal use but not for sale
- The accused used Ecstasy but was not “under the influence??? while driving
Experienced Representation in California Ecstasy Accusations
Rated “superb??? by the Avvo lawyer rating service and a “Top Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney??? by OC Metro Magazine, Randy Collins is recognized by clients, peers, and judges as a “go to??? lawyer for the defense of criminal accusations involving Ecstasy and other drugs.
With offices in Newport Beach, Riverside, and other Southern California communities, The Law Offices of Randy Collins is prepared to assist individuals accused of Ecstasy crimes in all Southern California courts, including San Diego County, Riverside County, Orange County, and elsewhere. Call (888) 250-2865 to make an appointment regarding your Ecstasy arrest or prosecution.