Scenario 4:

Question : Defendant, a potential second felony offender, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance in the first degree contrary to PL 220.21(1). Defendant can provide material assistance to drug enforcement agents and is willing to plead to the class A-II felony of criminal possession in the second degree (PL 220.18(1)) with the understanding that in consideration of a cooperation agreement with authorities, defendant may be placed on lifetime probation. The prosecuting assistant district attorney rejects defendant's offer out of hand, pointing out that as a second felony offender, if convicted of a class A felony defendant must receive a mandatory term of imprisonment. Defense counsel maintains defendant's record is not a legal obstacle. Who is correct?

Answer :