2C:35-3. Leader of Narcotics Trafficking Network.

As used in this section:

Terms Used In New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-3

  • Controlled dangerous substance: means a drug, substance, or immediate precursor in Schedules I through V, any substance the distribution of which is specifically prohibited in N. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2
  • Controlled substance analog: means a substance that has a chemical structure substantially similar to that of a controlled dangerous substance and that was specifically designed to produce an effect substantially similar to that of a controlled dangerous substance. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2
  • Dispense: means to deliver a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog to an ultimate user or research subject by or pursuant to the lawful order of a practitioner, including the prescribing, administering, packaging, labeling, or compounding necessary to prepare the substance for that delivery. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2
  • Distribute: means to deliver other than by administering or dispensing a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2
  • Immediate precursor: means a substance which the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety has found to be and by regulation designates as being the principal compound commonly used or produced primarily for use, and which is an immediate chemical intermediary used or likely to be used in the manufacture of a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog, the control of which is necessary to prevent, curtail, or limit such manufacture. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2
  • Manufacture: means the production, preparation, propagation, compounding, conversion, or processing of a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog, either directly or by extraction from substances of natural origin, or independently by means of chemical synthesis, or by a combination of extraction and chemical synthesis, and includes any packaging or repackaging of the substance or labeling or relabeling of its container, except that this term does not include the preparation or compounding of a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog by an individual for his own use or the preparation, compounding, packaging, or labeling of a controlled dangerous substance: (1) by a practitioner as an incident to his administering or dispensing of a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog in the course of his professional practice, or (2) by a practitioner (or under his supervision) for the purpose of, or as an incident to, research, teaching, or chemical analysis and not for sale. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2
  • Person: means any corporation, association, partnership, trust, other institution or entity, or one or more individuals. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2
  • Production: includes the manufacture, planting, cultivation, growing, or harvesting of a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2
  • State: means the State of New Jersey. See New Jersey Statutes 2C:35-2


"Financier" means a person who, with the intent to derive a profit, provides money or credit or other thing of value in order to purchase a controlled dangerous substance or an immediate precursor, or otherwise to finance the operations of a drug trafficking network.

A person is a leader of a narcotics trafficking network if he conspires with two or more other persons in a scheme or course of conduct to unlawfully manufacture, distribute, dispense, bring into or transport in this State methamphetamine, lysergic acid diethylamide, phencyclidine, gamma hydroxybutyrate, flunitrazepam or any controlled dangerous substance classified in Schedule I or II, or any controlled substance analog thereof as a financier, or as an organizer, supervisor or manager of at least one other person.

Leader of narcotics trafficking network is a crime of the first degree and upon conviction thereof, except as may be provided by N.J.S.2C:35-12, a person shall be sentenced to an ordinary term of life imprisonment during which the person must serve 25 years before being eligible for parole. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection a. of N.J.S.2C:43-3, the court may also impose a fine not to exceed $750,000.00 or five times the street value of the controlled dangerous substance, controlled substance analog, gamma hydroxybutyrate or flunitrazepam involved, whichever is greater.

Notwithstanding the provisions of N.J.S.2C:1-8, a conviction of leader of narcotics trafficking network shall not merge with the conviction for any offense which is the object of the conspiracy. Nothing contained in this section shall prohibit the court from imposing an extended term pursuant to N.J.S.2C:43-7; nor shall this section be construed in any way to preclude or limit the prosecution or conviction of any person for conspiracy under N.J.S.2C:5-2, or any prosecution or conviction under N.J.S. 2C:35-4 (maintaining or operating a CDS production facility), N.J.S. 2C:35-5 (manufacturing, distributing or dispensing), N.J.S. 2C:35-6 (employing a juvenile in a drug distribution scheme), N.J.S. 2C:35-9 (strict liability for drug induced death), N.J.S. 2C:41-2 (racketeering activities) or subsection g. of N.J.S. 2C:5-2 (leader of organized crime).

It shall not be necessary in any prosecution under this section for the State to prove that any intended profit was actually realized. The trier of fact may infer that a particular scheme or course of conduct was undertaken for profit from all of the attendant circumstances, including but not limited to the number of persons involved in the scheme or course of conduct, the actor’s net worth and his expenditures in relation to his legitimate sources of income, the amount or purity of the specified controlled dangerous substance, controlled substance analog, gamma hydroxybutyrate or flunitrazepam involved, or the amount of cash or currency involved.

It shall not be a defense to a prosecution under this section that such controlled dangerous substance, controlled substance analog, gamma hydroxybutyrate or flunitrazepam was brought into or transported in this State solely for ultimate distribution or dispensing in another jurisdiction; nor shall it be a defense that any profit was intended to be made in another jurisdiction.

It shall not be a defense that the defendant was subject to the supervision or management of another, nor that another person or persons were also leaders of the narcotics trafficking network.

L.1987, c.106, s.1; amended 1997, c.181, s.1; 1997, c.343; 1999, c.133, s.1.