In New Jersey, facing charges for crimes such as drug possession or drug trafficking can lead to serious penalties. Often the severity of the penalty is influenced by the amount of drugs discovered or previous convictions for similar offenses. Consequences can include jail time, drug treatment programs and probation.
But what sort of penalties lie in store for someone who is caught with almost 4,000 pounds of marijuana?
No one would argue that nearly 2 tons of marijuana is a large amount of drugs. In fact, U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported that it was one of the largest drug busts in a southern port in over two years. And though federal authorities have already seized the contraband, they are still looking for the individuals responsible for sending the drugs.
According to Customs, whoever smuggled the drugs in tried to do so by loading it in between magnetite and sending it on a ship. But apparently this wasn't the best way to hide the drug and get it into the country because Customs quickly spotted the marijuana shipment when the ship arrived in Miami. Federal agents became suspicious of the ship's load during a routine search and found more than 80 burlap sacks stuffed with drugs.
A federal investigation has already been launched as Customs searches for any connection to the multi-million dollar marijuana shipment. No doubt they are trying to determine who sent the marijuana and who was supposed to intercept the shipment.
It is highly likely that whoever is eventually arrested and charged with shipping almost two tons of marijuana will face severe penalties. And given the nature of the situation, federal agents will likely aggressively pursue leads until someone is arrested.
Source: Miami Herald: "Nearly 2 tons of marijuana found at Miami port," Lomi Kriel, Oct. 20, 2011