Georgia takes involvement of minors in drug crimes seriously. Punishments may be more severe when minors took part in drug operations, even when they only played a small role.
Obtaining controlled substances
In Georgia, it’s illegal to receive a controlled substance from a minor. The exception to this rule is if you’re an immediate family member.
Giving controlled substances
It’s illegal to give controlled substances to minors whether you’re selling it to them or not. You could face up to five years in prison and up to a $50,000 fine for this drug crime.
You can’t hire, employ or use a minor for drug operations in Georgia. First-time offenses for these drug crimes are punishable for at least one year in prison. Culprits are subject to twice the maximum authorized punishment and at least twice the authorized term of supervised release. If you use a minor in any way to help you avoid detection or punishment for an offense, then this is also illegal.
The penalties for drug crimes committed in school zones are usually more severe. Even just possessing and manufacturing drugs in a school zone could come with harsher punishments. It’s not just school zones but all drug-free zones that this applies to. Possessing, distributing or manufacturing a controlled substance or marijuana within 1,000 feet of an elementary school, a secondary school or a school board used for either elementary or secondary education is illegal. Breaking this law is a felony in Georgia. Conspiring to break it is also a felony. The penalties are up to 20 years in prison and up to a $20,000 fine. On subsequent offenses, these drug crimes come with a mandatory five years in prison. A judge can’t order more than a 40-year sentence for this crime.
When minors are part of your drug crime, it could make it a felony. Crimes involving children are often more serious in terms of legal punishment. Even committing the act within 1,000 feet of a school could increase your penalties.