Massachusetts Drug Classes
Under Massachusetts law, there are drug classes that determine the type
of drug and the penalties for possessing, manufacturing or distributing
them. Class A and B include opioids and opium derivatives, Class C include
some narcotics, Class D includes marijuana and Class E include narcotics
that contain additional substances.
Class A and B
Many opioids and opium derivatives are Class A drugs. According to the
National Institute on Drug Abuse, opioids typically come in the form of
medication used to treat pain, such as Codeine, Percocet and Vicodin. Hallucinogens such as flunitrazepam
or ketamine are also Class A drugs. The NIDA states that these are often
known as club drugs because they are popular at parties. Roofies, Ecstasy
and Vitamin K are more commonly known names of these substances.
Class B drugs include some opiates, stimulants such as cocaine and methamphetamines,
depressants such as barbiturates and some hallucinogens such as LSD.
Manufacturing, possessing, distributing or dispensing Class A or B drugs
could result in a prison sentence of up to 10 years, or up to two-and-a-half
years in jail or house of correction, and/or a fine of $1,000 to $10,000.
Class C drugs include some narcotics, as well as depressants and sedatives.
Many of these are prescription medications that doctors recommend for
treatment of insomnia and mental health issues.
Common names of these include the following:
A prison term of up to five years or two-and-a-half years in jail and/or
a fine of between $500 and $5,000 may result from a conviction.
Marijuana, barbital, ethchlorvynol and meprobamate are examples of Class
D drugs. These are all available by prescription, but anyone who manufactures,
cultivates, dispenses or distributes them illegally may spend up to two
years in jail and/or pay a fine of between $500 and $5,000.
What is a Class E Drug?
Narcotics that contain limited amounts of such substances as codeine, diphenoxylate
or opium are listed as Class E drugs. The possession, distribution, dispensation
or manufacture of these substances may result in a fine of between $250
and $2,500 and/or a jail term of up to nine months.
This is not an exhaustive list of substances that Massachusetts law considers
illicit drugs with corresponding penalties upon conviction. Anyone who
is arrested on a
drug charge may benefit from legal advice and representation of a Massachusetts criminal
defense attorney who is familiar with all of the state's laws.
Call (617) 300-0212 for more information.