At The Law Office of Ann Gottesman, located in Pasadena, California, and serving the Los Angeles County, you can count on aggressive, experienced legal representation if you or a loved one has been charged with a marijuana drug crime.  Ann has successfully represented many people accused of selling, possessing, cultivating and transporting marijuana in Los Angeles county.  As a former public defender, Ann has learned the inner workings of the criminal courts and the Judges and prosecutors that work there. Her commitment to her clients and her reputation for being a fair and forthright lawyer, has earned her the respect of both the judiciary and her peers.  Dedicated, compassionate and experienced, attorney Ann Gottesman has devoted her entire legal career to representing the criminally accused. Passionate about the civil rights given to us by the U.S. Constitution, Ann knows that you are innocent until proven guilty.

Medical Marijuana and Cultivation in Pasadena and Los Angeles  

Senate Bill 420, known as the Medical Marijuana Program Act, which is written into Health and Safety Code § 11362.7 through 11362.83, allows marijuana collectives and cooperatives to provide medical marijuana to those with doctor recommendations.  While this law provides legal protections to qualified patients and those acting as caregivers, it does not actually legalize marijuana.  Police can still arrest a collective operator or patient for marijuana sales, cultivation, possession or transportation, but in Court, if the accused can demonstrate compliance with the medical marijuana statutes, he or she will have the charges dismissed.

It is not uncommon for someone who has a medical marijuana card to be charged with both possession and cultivation. If you have a legitimate recommendation from your doctor, and the proper documentation, you can fight these kinds of charges, and generally they are dismissed.

In the past, possessing a small amount of marijuana for personal use was a misdemeanor punishable only by a $100 fine. That law, however, recently changed.  Now, if you possess less than one ounce of marijuana (not including concentrated cannibis), it will be charged as an infraction.  If however, you possess any more than over one ounce, you can face 6 months in the county jail or fine of up to $500 or both.

Cultivating marijuana is a felony. Selling marijuana is a felony. Felony charges can result in significant jail time, as well as fines.

Even if an accused is operating a collective or growing marijuana plants for personal use and is not in strict compliance with the California marijuana laws, sometimes negotiating with the prosecutor or District Attorney can result in the dismissal of charges or a reduction of the charges.  Having a knowledgeable and dedicated criminal defense lawyer who knows the prosecutors and Judges in the court in which your case was filed is crucial when you are facing criminal charges that can lead to jail, large fines and probation.

Possessing Marijuana More Than One Ounce

If you are arrested or charged for possession of more than one ounce of marijuana, this constitutes a violation of Health & Safety Code §11357(c) and it is highly recommended that you don’t just go to court and plead guilty. A conviction for possessing more than 28.5 grams of marijuana can lead to up to 6 months in county jail, a fine of up to $500 or both. If you are under the age of 21 you can even lose your driver’s license for one year. Depending upon the facts of your case and your criminal record, such marijuana charges may be reduced to simple possession of less than one ounce, which would result in only an infraction and no jail time.

If you are arrested with more than an ounce of marijuana and you had a valid doctor’s recommendation to use marijuana medically, there is a possibility that your charges may be dismissed or reduced. Furthermore, even if you did not possess a valid doctor’s recommendation, there are often other options such as drug diversion (such as pursuant to Penal Code section 1000) which would provide the accused with the opportunity to have the charges dismissed and cleared from your record.

Marijuana Possession Less than an Ounce 

After January 1, 2011, Health and Safety Code section 11357(b) changed the law with respect to possessing one ounce or less of marijuana or cannabis. While it used to be a misdemeanor punishable by a $100 fine, it is now only an infraction with a $100 fine. However, possessing less than an ounce of concentrated cannabis is still a misdemeanor.  However, if you were possessing marijuana on school grounds, even if less than an ounce, you will then face a misdemeanor with up to 10 days jail and a fine of up to $500.  Interestingly, if you are a minor, under the age of 18 and commit the same offense on school grounds, you will only face a maximum fine of $250 and no jail time for the first offense. A subsequent violation could result in higher fines and up to 10 days in juvenile detention.

Compassionate and diligent, Ann puts extensive time and energy into your case so that you are assured the best possible outcome. Available to her clients 7 days a week, she usually returns phone calls within an hour.  

"I am a sole practitioner. This means that you get personalized one-on-one attention from me, not a lower level associate. I will personally handle your case from the beginning to end.  I understand that facing criminal charges is frightening and daunting. I'm here to help my clients through their journey with the best outcome possible. "

If you are in the Pasadena area, or anywhere else in Los Angeles County, facing marijuana drug charges, please contact The Law Office of Ann Gottesman for your FREE consultation. There are alternatives to jail, depending on your background and what you are charged with. Both Proposition 36 and Penal Code 1000 offer diversion programs which can ultimately result in a full dismissal of your drug charges. Speak with Ann to see if you qualify.