ARS 13-3401: List of Illegal Drugs in Arizona


In recent years, we’ve seen lower the penalties for certain drugs and as well as the decriminalization of drugs such as marijuana. Even though laws are changing and Arizona is becoming less strict for drug crimes, A.R.S. 13-3401 still is in effect, defining which drugs are illegal in Arizona.

If you have been charged with a crime dealing with illegal drugs in Arizona, a conviction will result in severe penalties such as jail time, hefty fees, and even probation. The first step you should take after being charged with an illegal drug crime is to get in touch with an experienced criminal defense team, like Jackson White Law — click here to see our case results.

Important Definitions According to A.R.S. 13-3401

Seeing as most drugs can be found growing in nature or are legal to consume with a prescription, it’s important for police officers and prosecutors to distinguish what is legal and what is illegal. For instance, A.R.S. 13-3401 defines marijuana as all parts of any plants from the cannabis family from which the resin has not been extracted.

This definition is important if you are found to be in possession of marijuana plants. If the resin has been removed, these plants are no longer illegal, and you are not committing a crime. If the resin has not been removed, you may be charged with a crime depending on the amount and their intended use.

Here are other significant definitions in A.R.S. 13-3401:

  1. “Administer” means to apply, inject or facilitate the inhalation or ingestion of a substance to the body of a person.
  2. “Amidone” means any substance identified chemically as (4-4-diphenyl-6-dimethylamine-heptanone-3), or any salt of such significance, by whatever trade name designated.
  3. “Board” means the Arizona state board of pharmacy.
  4. “Cannabis” means the following substances under whatever names they may be designated:

(a) The resin extracted from any part of a plant of the genus cannabis, and every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture or preparation of such plant, its seeds or its resin.  Cannabis does not include oil or cake made from the seeds of such plant, any fiber, compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture or preparation of the mature stalks of such plant except the resin extracted from the stalks or any fiber, oil or cake or the sterilized seed of such plant which is incapable of germination.

(b) Every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture or preparation of such resin or tetrahydrocannabinol.

  1. “Coca leaves” means cocaine, its optical isomers and any compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture or preparation of coca leaves, except derivatives of coca leaves which do not contain cocaine, ecgonine or substances from which cocaine or ecgonine may be synthesized or made.
  2. “Director” means the director of the department of health services.
  3. “Dispense” means distribute, leave with, give away, dispose of or deliver.
  4. “Drug court program” means a program that is established pursuant to section 13-3422 by the presiding judge of the superior court in cooperation with the county attorney in a county for the purpose of prosecuting, adjudicating and treating drug dependent persons who meet the criteria and guidelines for entry into the program that are developed and agreed on by the presiding judge and the prosecutor.
  5. “Drug dependent person” means a person who is using a substance that is listed in paragraph 6, 19, 20, 21 or 28 of this section and who is in a state of psychological or physical dependence, or both, arising from the use of that substance.
  6. “Licensed” or “permitted” means authorized by the laws of this state to do certain things.
  7. “Manufacture” means produce, prepare, propagate, compound, mix or process, directly or indirectly, by extraction from substances of natural origin or independently by means of chemical synthesis, or by a combination of extraction and chemical synthesis. Manufacture includes any packaging or repackaging or labeling or relabeling of containers.
  8. “Manufacturer” means a person who manufactures a narcotic or dangerous drug or other substance controlled by this chapter.
  9. “Marijuana” means all parts of any plant of the genus cannabis, from which the resin has not been extracted, whether growing or not, and the seeds of such plant. Marijuana does not include the mature stalks of such plant or the sterilized seed of such plant which is incapable of germination.

List of Illegal Drugs in Arizona

Arizona law is clear when it comes to knowingly possessing or using drugs. What is often not so clear is whether or not a drug is considered to be illegal or not. Here is a partial list that includes some of the most common illegal drugs in Arizona:

  • Alpha-ethyltryptamine
  • Alpha-methyltryptamine
  • Aminorex
  • Amphetamine
  • Benzphetamine
  • Benzylpiperazine (BZP)
  • Bufotenine
  • Codeine
  • Diazepam
  • Diethyltryptamine
  • Dimethylcathinone (Metamfepramone)
  • Dimethyltryptamine
  • Ethcathinone
  • Fentanyl
  • Hydrocodone
  • Ibogaine
  • Ketamine
  • Marijuana (in specific quantities and uses)
  • Mescaline
  • Methaqualone
  • Methoxymethylenedioxyamphetamine (MMDA)
  • Methylenedioxyamphetamine (MDA)
  • Morphine
  • Nabilone
  • Normethadone
  • Opium
  • Phentermine
  • Psilacetin
  • Psilocybin
  • Psilocyn
  • Synhexyl
  • Trenbolone
  • Trifluoromethylphenylpiperazine (TFMPP)
  • Trimethoxyamphetamine (TMA)

While all of the drugs listed above are classified as illegal drugs, many are simply illegal without a prescription. For instance, many patients who have been injured will be prescribed Vicodin or Hydrocodone to help control the pain. With a valid prescription, it is legal to be in possession of these drugs so long as the quantities match your prescription.

Illegal Drug Charge Defense

Illegal drug charges are often a felony offense in Arizona. Felony offenses carry severe penalties such as mandatory jail sentences and hefty fines, but a felony conviction will also reduce your ability to find a job or even rent an apartment.

To fight these charges, you are going to need the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Our criminal defense team at Jackson White Law is ready to craft a solid and effective defense to help fight your illegal drug charges.


Call the JacksonWhite Criminal Law team at (480) 467-4370 to discuss your case today.

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