You violate HS 11352 (the sale or transportation of controlled substances) when you move drugs from point A to point B. It is more severe than simple drug possession charges. Even a first-time crime is punishable by strict penalties like hefty fines and serving time, and you require the best legal defense and strategies. At Los Angeles Criminal Attorney, we know a lot is at stake and can ensure your rights are protected as we fight for the most favorable case outcome.

Selling/Transporting Controlled Substances

The definition of HS 11352 (selling or transporting a controlled substance) is as follows:

  • You did any of the below with controlled substances covered by the law:
  1. Furnished them
  2. Gave them away
  3. Transported them for sale
  4. Administered them
  5. Imported them into California
  6. Sold them
  7. Offered to engage in any of the above
  • You were aware of the controlled substances’ existence
  • You were aware of their character or nature as controlled substances
  • The controlled substances were in usable amounts if accused of this crime

Controlled Substances

Common controlled substances covered under HS 11352 include:

  • Peyote
  • Prescription drugs like hydrocodone and codeine
  • Opiates
  • Heroin
  • Cocaine

Transporting a Controlled Substance

Transporting a controlled substance means moving or carrying it from point A to B regardless of the distance. The defendant can transport the drug by bicycle, walking, plane, or motor vehicle.

Nevertheless, the accused person can only be convicted of this crime if the intent is to sell the narcotics. If they transport controlled substances without sale intentions, they will face simple possession (HS 11350) charges.

Another element of the crime is that you transport the drugs in a usable amount. That means trace amounts do not matter. However, the usable amount condition applies to drug transportation, not drug sales.

Offering to Sell, Furnish, or Transport Drugs

The defendant can be charged with this crime when they make an offer to transport, sell, or give away/administer/furnish drugs. However, they can only be convicted if they made their offer and intended to accomplish it.

Constructive Possession

The defendant could be sentenced for controlled substance trafficking even if they did not handle or touch the narcotics, provided they have constructive possession (control over their drug through another individual or personally).

How the Prosecution Team Builds a Strong Case Against You

Typically, HS 11352 investigations encompass sting operations (efforts to catch people violating the law through deceptive methods.

Some arrests happen after law enforcers acquire information from confidential informants. Generally, informants working in return for less severe penalties for their criminal cases or money give the law enforcement officer misleading or false information. Therefore, if your case has an informant, you should file a motion to disclose the informant’s identity. That way, you can challenge the prosecution’s claim that their sources are reliable.

The police also collect controlled substance trafficking evidence through surveillance posts or observation. The law enforcement officers can set up camps to observe the suspect and their drug activities near their workplace, home, or a place known for drug sales.

An undercover controlled buy is another method to make a drug trafficking arrest. It can happen over the internet or in person. In both cases, law enforcers pose as sellers or buyers of narcotics, hoping to entice the suspect into conduct that supports an HS 11352 arrest.

Penalties and Consequences of Violating HS 11352

Violation of HS 11352 is a California felony. A first-time crime carries the following potential penalties:

  • Formal (felony) probation
  • Three, six, or nine years in county jail or three, four, or five years in jail under the realignment program if found guilty of drug trafficking across at least two California county lines
  • A maximum fine of $20,000

If the judge imposed felony probation, you should comply with the following terms and conditions:

  • Regular meetings with the probation officer
  • Submission to random drug testing
  • Community service engagement
  • Completing a treatment program
  • Counseling
  • Paying court costs
  • Agreeing to submit to police searches
  • Not breaking any law

The terms imposed should be logically linked to the crime committed and reasonable. If you violate your probation condition(s), the judge can:

  • Warn you and reinstate the same terms,
  • Modify your terms and include more severe conditions, or
  • Revoke your felony probation and order you to serve time.

Please note that you are not eligible for formal probation if one of the statements below is correct:

  • You are guilty of HS 11352 for selling or offering to sell or selling at least 14.25 grams of a drug with heroin
  • You are guilty of California HS 11352 for offering to sell or selling any heroin amount and have a previous conviction for either California HS 11351 or HS 11352
  • You are sentenced for offering to sell or selling cocaine, methamphetamine, or cocaine base and were previously convicted of offering to sell, selling any controlled substance, or drug possession for sale.

Aggravating Factors and Sentencing Enhancements

Numerous scenarios can enhance your basic HS 11352 penalties and consequences, including:

     a) Transporting or Selling Narcotics Near Homeless Shelters or a Drug Treatment Facility

The judge will enhance your sentence by an additional and consecutive year if all the statements below are correct:

  1. The involved drug was cocaine base, cocaine, or heroin
  2. The trafficking happened within 1,000 feet or on the grounds of a homeless center, detox center, or drug treatment facility.

     b) Trafficking of Huge Quantities of Cocaine or Heroin

If you are found guilty of this drug crime, and the drug is or has cocaine, cocaine base, or heroin, your sentence will be enhanced by:

  1. Three years if your drug is more than a kilogram
  2. Five years if the drugs exceed four kilograms
  3. Ten years if the narcotic weighs at least ten kilograms
  4. Fifteen years if your drugs are more than 20 kilograms
  5. Twenty years if the drugs exceed 40 kilograms
  6. Twenty-five years if your controlled substance is at least 80 kilograms

Moreover, you can face a fine enhancement between one million and eight million.If you are found guilty of this drug crime, and the drug is or has cocaine, cocaine base, or heroin, your sentence will be enhanced by:

  1. Three years if your drug is more than a kilogram
  2. Five years if the drugs exceed four kilograms
  3. Ten years if the narcotic weighs at least ten kilograms
  4. Fifteen years if your drugs are more than 20 kilograms
  5. Twenty years if the drugs exceed 40 kilograms
  6. Twenty-five years if your controlled substance is at least 80 kilograms

Moreover, you can face a fine enhancement between one million and eight million.

     c) Furnishing or Selling Controlled Substances to Specific Individuals 

The court will also impose more severe penalties if the prosecutor proves that the defendant was or ought to have been aware that they were furnishing, administering, giving away, or selling drugs to:

  1. An expectant mother
  2. A person with a drug challenge or mental health condition
  3. An individual with a prior felony conviction

     d) Previous Convictions 

Suppose the defendant has been sentenced for Health and Safety Section Code 11352 HS and has more than one prior California felony for a controlled substance offense apart from personal use. In that case, they will face a three-year jail sentence enhancement for every previous conviction.

Adverse Immigration Penalties

Violation of HS 11352 can lead to deportation under the federal Immigration and Nationality ACT (INA) if you are not a United States citizen. It can include:

  • Deportation and removal
  • Denial of the privilege to re-enter the U.S.
  • Denial of the ability to naturalize as a citizen of the United States

The above consequences can apply regardless of the following:

  • The duration you have lived in America
  • How well-established your life is here (stable employment, homeownership, business ownership)
  • Whether you have dependent children who are U.S. citizens
  • The immigration status (visa holder, legal permanent resident, a refugee who has been granted asylum)

Drug Trafficking Involving Minors

Drug trafficking involving minor children is a different crime covered by HS 11353.

An individual is guilty of HS 11353 if they are at least 18 and they either:

  • Use, hire, or employ a minor to give away, peddle, prepare for selling, transport, or sell drugs
  • Sell, give away, administer, or furnish or offer to sell, give away, administer, or furnish drugs to a child

The crime attracts three, six, or nine years in California state prison.

  • Your sentence can also be enhanced by one or two years in state prison if:
  • You committed the crime in or within 1,000 feet of any facility where children are frequently present, like an educational or religious institution
  • The controlled substance involved was cocaine, cocaine base, or heroin

Additionally, if you are four years younger than the child, the judge will enhance your sentence by one, two, or three years.

Fighting Your Criminal Charges

Your criminal defense lawyer should thoroughly review your case facts to develop a strong defense strategy. Common legal defenses include:

Police Misconduct

Police misconduct is any illegal or inappropriate conduct by police officers in their official capacity.

Police violate the law when:

  • They plant evidence (placing controlled substances on an individual, motor vehicle, or apartment to make the arrest)
  • Falsifying probable cause that results in an arrest
  • Using excessive force to acquire a confession or other proof
  • Lying about where they discovered the drugs

If you are a victim of police misconduct, you can take any of the following actions:

  • File a complaint with the police misconduct
  • Request the court to exclude all evidence that was discovered due to the misconduct by filing a suppression motion

Lack of Knowledge

You can be acquitted of HS 11352 if:

  • You were not aware of the controlled substance’s existence, or
  • You were not aware that what you transported or sold was a drug

Absence of Intent

One of the elements of the crime is the intent to offer to transport, furnish, or sell. That means you cannot be convicted if you do not plan to execute the offer.


You can use entrapment as your defense if you prove that you engaged in drug trafficking because a law enforcer lured, enticed, or coerced you into violating the law.

The defense is valid if the law enforcers’ conduct goes beyond an offer or a suggestion. It should amount to the degree that it could be challenging for a sensible individual to refuse.

Unlawful Search and Seizure

Generally, HS 11353 arrests stem from unlawful search and seizure acts like:

  • Searching you without a valid search warrant
  • Exceeding the scope of the search warrant
  • Illegally detaining and searching you without probable cause
  • Searching you without your voluntary consent

If the defendant is a victim of an unlawful search or seizure, they have the right to have the evidence that police acquired through the search suppressed. The prosecution cannot use the evidence against them in the trial. It is called the exclusionary rule.

Before your trial, your defense lawyer can challenge the proof from the search by filling out PC 1538.5 (motion to suppress evidence). If the court grants the motion and finds proof essential to the prosecutor’s case against you, your charges can be reduced or even dismissed.

Related Offenses

Below are crimes that can be charged alongside or instead of HS 11352:

Possession of Controlled Substances for Sale

HS 11351 makes it a felony to possess cocaine, LSD, heroin, or prescription drugs like codeine, oxycodone, or hydrocodone to sell. A conviction carries:

  • Probation and a maximum of a year in county jail
  • Two, three, or four years in jail
  • Up to $20,000 in fine

Possession for sale is a less severe crime because it does not involve transporting or selling drugs.

Transportation and Sale of Methamphetamines

HS 11379 makes it a felony to transport or sell methamphetamine. It attracts two, three, or four years in county jail.

While the law is identical to California HS 11352, it involves different controlled substances like ketamine, ecstasy, or PCP. The penalties are less severe than those for drug trafficking.

Marijuana Transportation/Sale

HS 11360 bans the transportation of bhang intended to be sold, given away, or furnished. It is a California felony punishable by two, three, or four years in jail.

Nevertheless, if you give away or transport with the intent to sell less than 28.5 grams of marijuana, you face a misdemeanor. It carries a $100 fine.

Operating a Drug House

If you give away or sell controlled substances at an apartment or house and do so continuously or repeatedly, you can be charged with HS 11352.

Typically, this crime is charged alongside drug trafficking.

Violation of HS 11366 is a wobbler. A California felony carries a maximum of three years in state prison.

Money Laundering the Drug Sales Proceeds

HS 11370.9 prohibits engaging in financial transactions involving funds that the defendant knows were derived from a drug offense intending to conceal the source of the money. The code section covers transactions totaling at least $25,000 in thirty days.

It is a California wobbler. If charged with a felony, you will face the following penalties:

  • Twice the amount involved or $250,000 in fine, whichever is higher
  • Two to four years in California state prison

Sale of Synthetic Drugs

HS 11375.5 or HS 11357.5 are California statutes that make bans:

  • Selling
  • Dispensing
  • Furnishing
  • Administering
  • Offering to sell or give
  • Distributing

Synthetic marijuana (often marketed as herbal incense, spice, or potpourri) and synthetic stimulants like bath salts

The offense is a California misdemeanor, carrying a $1,000 fine and six months in jail. It has more lenient penalties than the sale or transportation of controlled substances.

Sale of Imitation Controlled Substances

HS 11355 and HS 109575 cover the sale of drugs deliberately made to resemble genuine controlled substances.

Violation of HS 109575 is a California misdemeanor. You will pay a fine of one thousand dollars and spend six (6) months in jail.

HS 11355 is charged as a wobbler. A misdemeanor is punishable by a year in jail, while a felony carries:

  • Sixteen months
  • Two years, or
  • Three years in jail

Your Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help You Reduce Your HS 11352 Charges to a Less Severe Offense

Depending on your case circumstances, your lawyer can assist you in reducing the crime to a lesser charge, like HS 11350. The attorney can negotiate with the prosecutor and highlight all weaknesses and gaps in this case. The prosecutor could fear losing the trial and offer less severe charges.

An HS 11351 charge makes you illegible for pretrial diversion under Penal Code 1000 PC.

Why You Should Engage a Defense lawyer

If you are facing a drug crime, you could consider handling the legal matter alone, especially if you believe you are innocent or if this is your first crime. Nevertheless, this is not wise. Consequences can go beyond incarceration. A permanent criminal record, for instance, can affect the ability to obtain employment, housing, and state professional licenses. The last thing you want is to jeopardize your future and life by failing to seek skilled legal representation.

Here are the benefits of an attorney:

  • Understands federal and state laws — Criminal laws are complicated and come with numerous statutes, constitutional rights, and court decisions that could apply to the case. That means you cannot raise effective legal defenses if you are acquainted with the law.
  • Knowledgeable about procedural rules — Your counsel knows the rules applying your criminal charges that govern the pleadings you should file, the proper paperwork, and the timeframe for bringing motions in the case. If you fail to adhere to these regulations, you could miss critical deadlines for raising defenses, or the court will not hear the defenses.
  • Conducts investigations — The prosecution team consists of the police and investigators who work aggressively to build a strong case against you. You require a proficient legal expert who can level the playing field. They should conduct thorough investigations of the case facts, interview witnesses, and examine the evidence.
  • Challenges evidence — Law enforcers might have violated procedures and laws when collecting evidence. Your lawyer should identify the violations and bring a motion to suppress the unlawfully acquired proof. If the prosecution cannot prove beyond reasonable doubt that you committed the crime, your charges should be reduced or dismissed.
  • Offers you a reality check — After investigating your case, your attorney should provide you with an objective evaluation of the case outcome. It will help you decide whether to accept the prosecutor’s plea offer or proceed to trial.
  • Engages in plea bargain negotiations — Your attorney can help decide whether to enter a plea agreement that is in your best interests. A plea bargain allows you to plead guilty to a crime in exchange for lesser severe penalties or a lighter sentence.

What are Your Rights During Police Investigation

Even if you are innocent and have nothing to hide, do not assume the trouble will be over by cooperating with the law enforcers. The police officers are investigating the matter because they think you are a suspect.

Here are the rights to remember when police contact you:

Right to Leave

You should leave if the police have neither arrested you nor read your Miranda rights. Ensure you ask the law enforcement officer before leaving.

Right Against an Unreasonable Search and Seizure

The fourth amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects you from unreasonable searches and seizures. Unless the law enforcement officers have a valid search warrant, you should not permit them to search your home, workplace, motor vehicle, or person.

Right to Remain Silent

The fifth amendment gives you the right to remain silent. It would be best if you did not speak with officers or answer their questions without your criminal defense lawyer present. The law enforcement officer is trained and skilled at tricking defendants into making self-incriminating statements. The officers can also lie to you during the interrogation. Given your circumstances, your defense attorney can advise you on how to deal with law enforcement.

You do not have to use specific words to invoke your Miranda rights. You can stop the interrogation by saying:

  • “I do not want to speak with you but my attorney.”
  • “I invoke my right against self-incrimination.”

If the officer continues questioning you after asserting the right, they violate the law.

What It Means When the Police Officer Stops Questioning You

It does not mean you are no longer a suspect. The officer could be obtaining your warrant of arrest or exploring other leads or pieces of evidence in their investigations.

Contact an Experienced Drug Crime Defense Attorney Near Me

HS 11352 charges carry stiff penalties and consequences that can significantly affect your life, career, future, and reputation. However, it would help if you remembered that you still have constitutional rights. The best way to assert them is to have a skilled drug crime defense attorney. Los Angeles Criminal Attorney can provide you with the necessary legal help to fight the charges against you. We have your best interest and will treat you with the compassion and respect you deserve.

Please call us at 424-333-0943 to schedule your free, confidential consultation. Our team will gladly offer you a thorough and honest case evaluation.