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Drug Crime Penalties

This is one part of several pages about drug crimes in Massachusetts. You should start with the introduction by clicking here.

In 2018, Massachusetts overhauled its sentencing system for drug crimes. Among other things, sentencing ranges for a wide range of drug offenses were changed and fentanyl was reclassified as a Class A substance. Possession of less than one ounce of marijuana is no longer a criminal offense.

The chart below summarizes the new sentence ranges for many of the most common drug crimes. This list is not exhaustive and you should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to make sure you are receiving full and complete advice regarding potential sentencing exposure. Please also note the chart does not include potential periods of probation or fines.

Class of DrugG.L.Penalty
Class A (Other than Heroin)c. 94C, §340-1 year HOC
Heroinc. 94C, §340-2 years HOC
Heroin 2nd/Subsequentc. 94C, §342 ½ - 5 years prison or 0-2 ½ HOC
Note: No mandatory language
Class Bc. 94C, §340-1 year HOC
Class Cc. 94C, §340-1 year HOC
Class Dc. 94C, §340-1 year HOC
Class Ec. 94C, §340-6 months HOC
Class A, B, C, or D
c. 94C, §340-2 years HOC
Distribution / Possession with Intent
Class of DrugG.L.Penalty
Class A (Now includes Fentanyl, Carfentanil, etc.)c. 94C, §32(a)0-10 years prison or 0-2 ½ years HOC
Class A 2nd/Subsequentc. 94C, §32(b)3 ½ -15 years prison – True Mandatory
Class Bc. 94C, §32A(a)0-10 years prison or 0-2 ½ years HOC
Class B 2nd/Subsequentc. 94C, §32A(b)0-10 years prison – no HOC alternative
Class B – Cocaine or Methc. 94C, §32A(c)0-10 years prison or 0-2 ½ years HOC
Class B – Cocaine or Meth 2nd/Subsequentc. 94C, §32A(d)0-15 years prison – no HOC alternative
Distribution / Possession without Intent – Cont.
Class of DrugG.L.Penalty
Class Cc. 94C, §32B0-5 years prison or 0-2 ½ years HOC
Class C 2nd/Subsequentc. 94C, §32B(b)0-10 years prison or 0-2 ½ years HOC
Class Dc.94C, §32C0-2 years HOC
Class D 2nd/Subsequentc. 94C, §32C(b)0-2 ½ years HOC
Class Ec. 94C, §32D0-9 months HOC
Class E 2nd/Subsequentc. 94C, §32D(b)0-1 ½ years HOC

Note: These mandatories all include “true mandatory” language

Class of DrugG.L.Penalty
Marijuana – 50-100lbsc. 94C, §32E(a)(1)2 ½ -15 years prison or 1-2 ½ years HOC
Marijuana – 100-2000lbsc. 94C, §32E(a)(2)2-15 years prison
Marijuana – 2000-10,000lbsc. 94C, §32E(a)(3)3 ½-15 years prison
Marijuana - + 10,000lbsc. 94C, §32E(a)(4)8-15 years prison
Cocaine/Meth – 18-36gc. 94C, §32E(b)(1)2-15 years prison
Cocaine/Meth – 36-100gc. 94C, §32E(b)(2)3 ½-20 years prison
Cocaine/Meth – 100-200gc. 94C, §32E(b)(3)8-20 years prison
Cocaine/Meth – 200+gc. 94C, §32E(b)(4)12-20 years prison
Heroin, etc. – 18-36gc. 94C, §32E(c)(1)3 ½-30 years prison
Heroin, etc. – 36-100gc. 94C, §32E(c)(2)5-30 years prison
Heroin, etc. – 100-200gc. 94C, §32E(c)(3)8-30 years prison
Heroin, etc. – 200+gc. 94C, §32E(c)(4)12-30 years prison
Fentanyl/Carfentanil – 10+gc. 94C, §32E(c ½)3 ½-20 years prison
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