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What is the difference between active and constructive possession?

On Behalf of | May 8, 2023 | drug offenses | 0 comments

Drug charges in Texas carry heavy penalties, including fines and jail time. If charged with drug possession in Texas, the state must prove possession. This may sound simple at first, but you can face possession charges, even if you did not have the drugs on your person.

Drug possession charges include active and construction.

How the law defines constructive possession

Constructive possession means that the officers did find drugs or drug paraphernalia, but not on your person. Instead, the officers may have found illicit substances in your vehicle, at your place of work or in your home. If you have control over a space or location and the police find drugs in that space, then the state may charge you with constructive possession.

In some cases, constructive possession is difficult to prove. For example, if you live with others and the police find drugs or paraphernalia in a common area of the house, you are only one of several people who control the area. Similarly, if an officer pulls you over and one of your friends hides drugs in your vehicle, it could alter your potential charges.

How the law defines active possession

Active possession refers to any illicit substances the officer finds on you during a body search. For example, drugs in your pockets, purse, backpack or shoes can result in charges of active possession. Those who try to swallow or dispose of illicit substances may face active possession charges.

When it comes to active and constructive possession, there are defenses for both charges, though constructive possession tends to be an easier battle.

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