Penal Code 1000 PC sets forth California's pretrial diversion program for drug crimes involving simple possession. Formerly known as deferred entry of judgment ("DEJ"), PC 1000 allows many non-violent drug offenders to obtain treatment and education instead of jail time.

Following successful completion of drug diversion, the charges are dismissed, leaving no criminal record for most purposes.  

Who is eligible for PC 1000 diversion?

To be eligible for PC 1000 pretrial diversion the charge(s) must generally be for simple possession of drugs -- that is, possession for personal use only.

A defendant charged with selling or transporting a controlled substance or possession of a controlled substance for sale is generally not eligible for pretrial diversion under Penal Code 1000.

What are the requirements for PC 1000 pretrial diversion?

In addition to the offense being listed in Penal Code 1000, all of the following four conditions must be met for a defendant to be eligible for drug diversion:


1) The defendant must not have been convicted of a non-PC 1000 eligible drug crime within the previous five years;

2)  The charged offense(s) must not have involved a crime of violence or threatened violence;

3)  There must be no evidence of any additional and more serious drug crime(s) (such as drug sale or possession for sale); and

4)  The defendant must not have any felonyconviction(s) within the preceding five years.

To help you better understand pretrial diversion under Penal Code 1000 PC, our California criminal defense lawyersdiscuss the following, below:

Penal Code 1000 PC is California's “pretrial diversion” law

 1. An overview and history of Penal Code 1000 PC

Penal Code 1000 PC is California's “pretrial diversion” law. It allows eligible defendants arrested for low-level drug crimes the opportunity to have their charges dismissed if they successfully complete drug treatment.

Before 2018, Penal Code 1000 was known as “deferred entry of judgment” (“DEJ”). Under that prior version of PC 1000, the defendant was required to enter a guilty plea to the charge(s) in order to participate in drug diversion.

If the defendant then completed the drug rehabilitation program, the charges would be dismissed. But if the defendant failed to complete rehab, he or she would be guilty of the charges.

Changes in PC 1000 Effective as of January 1, 2018

As of January 1, 2018, participation in PC 1000 drug diversion has been reclassified as a “pretrial” diversion program. The defendant can now plead “not guilty” to eligible charges and be permitted to participate in drug treatment.1

Upon successful completion of the program, the court will still dismiss the charges against the defendant. This is typically an 18 month process. 


What are California Drug Laws? It is very important that you hire a California drug defense attorney is you are arrested for a drug related offense including drug possession, drug transportation, drug manufacturing or drug distribution. A conviction on these charges could result in a lengthy prison sentence or collateral consequences—e.g. trouble finding safe and decent housing, termination of government provided benefits, or loss of employment.

Drug cases require a thorough investigation into the charges against you. Usually an evaluation will need to be conducted to learn why law enforcement officers believed they had probable cause to arrest you. Further, a drug related charge will often trigger constitutional issues such as your rights against unreasonable search and seizures or your right against self-incrimination. If you have been recently charged with a drug offense, contact our attorneys today before making a statement to the police. Any statements you may have made surrounding your arresting circumstances could be held against you in court.

In California, the most serious drug related offenses include drug possession, drug possession for sale, drug manufacturing and drug trafficking. Under 11350 of the Health and Safety Code, it is illegal to possess a controlled substance such as cocaine, crack cocaine, heroin, ecstasy, meth, or prescription painkillers without an authorized prescription. You could be criminally charged with the possession of drugs, when transporting medications for a family member. 


Drug charge 11351 of the Health and Safety Code, makes it a felony offense if you are found guilty of possessing illegal drugs for the purpose of selling. If you have been charged with this drug crime,  be aware that the prosecutor does not need to prove that there was an exchange between you and another person. You could be convicted if the government can prove that you had the intent to sell an illegal drug. Evidence of the the packaging of drugs such as weighing scales, quantity of drugs, or statements of informants, can indicate sales. 

Moreover, drug raids and undercover operations are usually conducted in order to charge individuals for violating 111352 of the Health and Safety Code. Under this law, it is illegal to sell, transport, or furnish an illegal drug in California. The most serious of all of the drug crimes in this state is the manufacturing of drugs and narcotics. A conviction of this crime which is codified at 11379 of the Health and Safety Code could result in a prison sentence of up to 7 years.

What are the possible punishments for a drug crime?

Drug charges can be classified as a misdemeanor or felony in this state. Also, you could also face federal drug charges if you have aggravating circumstances involved in your arrest.

Generally, whether or not you will have to spend time in jail or prison if you are convicted will depend upon a number of circumstances. Some of the factors which are used in determining punishment include: the type of drug involved, whether there are aggravating circumstances involved in your arrest (Murder, robbery, burglary, assault, etc.), if you have prior drug related convictions, and similar details.

The type of penalties that could be imposed upon you will depend upon the circumstances involved in your case. While your arresting incident may be similar to another person’s drug related arrest, the courts determine punishment on a case by case basis. So you could receive:

  • Probation  Drug counseling and treatment     Jail or state prison time   Community Service   Fines   Forfeiture of assets

What defenses can I assert to fight the charges?

There are many possible defenses available to you to keep you from going to jail, among the most common defenses are:

  • You had an amount of drugs that was only for personal use, not for sales    Entrapment   Search and Seizure Violation   The drugs did not belong to you.


Contact us today to help fight for your rights!