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Possession of Concentrated Cannabis: HS 11357(a)

California established the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, which was codified in HS11362.5. This act allows someone with a medical need to possess and cultivate concentrated cannabis or marijuana for personal medical reasons when recommended by a physician.

Unfortunately, this act does not automatically preclude the State of California from prosecuting those accused of possessing concentrated cannabis.

HS 11357(a) states the following:

"Except as authorized by law, every person who possesses any concentrated cannabis shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail for a period of not more than one year or by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars ($500), or by both such fine and imprisonment, or shall be punished by imprisonment, pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 of the penal code."

This statute is known as a "wobbler," which means it can be prosecuted as a misdemeanor or felony. If someone is charged with HS 11357(a), the State will have to prove the following:

  1. The defendant unlawfully possessed concentrated cannabis;
  2. The defendant knew of its presence;
  3. The defendant knew of the concentrated cannabis's nature or character as concentrated cannabis; and
  4. The concentrated cannabis was in a useable amount.

Concentrated cannabis is referred to as the separated resin from the cannabis plant, whether purified or crude. If you have been arrested, charged, or are under investigation for HS11357(a), contact my office today. I will provide a free, confidential consultation.