Over the past decade or two, many states have legalized or decriminalized marijuana, making it more accessible for residents.
However, under Wyoming law, neither recreational nor medical marijuana is legal.
However, Wyoming shares almost its entire southern border with Colorado, a state where marijuana is legal for recreational purposes.
While smuggling weed from Colorado to Wyoming may be tempting, it is against the law.
In fact, the possession of marijuana, as well as transporting it across state lines, is illegal under Wyoming and federal law.
At Cowboy Country Criminal Defense, we represent clients facing all types of drug cases. Our experienced attorneys regularly handle some of the most complex and high-stakes cases.
We always keep our focus on how to ensure your arrest impacts your life as little as possible.
Wyoming Marijuana Laws
Marijuana is illegal in Wyoming—it’s as simple as that. Regardless of any underlying medical conditions, no one in Wyoming can obtain a prescription for marijuana, and no amount is legal for recreational purposes.
In fact, the law in Wyoming is very clear in stating that anyone who “knowingly or intentionally uses or is under the influence of” marijuana commits a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $750.
However, if you have more marijuana on you, the punishment is much harsher.
For example, if police arrest you with less than three ounces, it is again a misdemeanor punishable by no more than 12 months imprisonment and a maximum fine of $1,000, or both.
But if you are arrested with more than three ounces, you face felony charges that carry a maximum of five years in prison and a maximum $10,000 fine, or both.
While possession of even a small amount of marijuana is illegal under state law, the more serious concern with bringing marijuana across state lines is that doing so is also a violation of federal law.
Can You Cross State Lines with Weed?
No. Even in states where marijuana is legal for recreational use, it is still a bad idea to smuggle weed out of the state and into another state.
There are a few reasons for this. First, the state you are traveling to may have laws making marijuana illegal. This is the case in Wyoming, for example.
In this situation, as you cross back into Wyoming, you will possess an illegal drug. It does not matter if you legally purchased the drug in another state.
The second problem with smuggling weed is that state borders and interstate highways fall within the federal court’s jurisdiction.
While, technically, federal agents could arrest anyone for possessing marijuana, in reality, they tend to limit the expenditure of federal resources for more serious crimes—such as drug smuggling.
Thus, if you cross state borders, you may raise the suspicion of federal agents who could arrest you if you are caught with marijuana.
In 2020, the federal government prosecuted over 1,100 people for marijuana trafficking. The average sentence in these cases was 29 months in federal prison. All but 12% of convicted defendants received a jail sentence.
What Punishment Does Weed Smuggling Carry?
If you are arrested for smuggling weed into Wyoming, you may face federal drug trafficking charges.
While it is impossible to determine what exact sentence you’d receive if found guilty, marijuana trafficking offenses carry the possibility of a ten-year sentence.
If it is your second offense, you could face a 20-year minimum sentence. The applicability of any mandatory minimum sentence will depend on the amount of marijuana.
Given the seriousness of these charges, anyone charged with federal drug trafficking crimes should immediately reach out to a dedicated Wyoming criminal defense attorney.
The assistance of an attorney can help you fight the case, and if you are found guilty, they can ensure you receive a fair sentence that takes all mitigating factors into account.
Do You Face Weed Smuggling Charges?
If you were arrested for smuggling weed, you need an attorney who takes your case as seriously as you do.
At Cowboy Country Criminal Defense, our dedicated team of Wyoming criminal defense attorneys has extensive experience handling all types of drug crimes.
Attorney Jeremy Hugus and the other experienced lawyers at Cowboy Country Criminal Defense can help you fight the government’s allegations.
Whether we are litigating a motion to keep evidence out of trial, negotiating with prosecutors on your behalf, or arguing your case in front of a jury, we have what it takes to provide you with the defense you need and deserve.
To learn more and to schedule a free consultation, give Cowboy Country Criminal Defense a call at 307-243-4978. You can also reach our Wyoming drug crime defense lawyers through our online form.