Upon the application of the prosecuting attorney, any person being at least 18 years of age who has been convicted for violating subsection a. of N.J.S. 2C:35-5 or section 1 of P.L. 1987, c. 101 ( C. 2C:35-7 ) by distributing a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog to a pregnant female or a person 17 years of age or younger shall, except as provided in N.J.S. 2C:35-12 , be subject to twice the term of imprisonment, fine and penalty, including twice the term of parole ineligibility, if any, authorized or required to be imposed by subsection b. of N.J.S. 2C:35-5 or section 1 of P.L. 1987, c. 101 ( C. 2C:35-7 ) or any other provision of this title. In addition, the presumption of non-imprisonment for certain offenders set forth in subsection e. of N.J.S. 2C:44-1 shall not apply to any person subject to enhanced punishment pursuant to this section.
The court shall not impose more than one enhanced sentence pursuant to this section. If the defendant is convicted of more than one offense which is otherwise subject to enhanced punishment pursuant to this section, the court shall impose enhanced punishment based upon the most serious such offense for which the defendant was convicted, or, where applicable, the offense which mandates the imposition of the longest term of parole ineligibility. Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (2) of subsection a. of 2C:44-5, nothing herein shall prevent the court from also imposing an extended term pursuant to subsection f. of N.J.S. 2C:43-6 . The court shall not impose an enhanced sentence pursuant to this section unless the prosecutor has established the ground therefor by a preponderance of the evidence at a hearing, which may occur at the time of sentencing. In making its finding, the court shall take judicial notice of any evidence, testimony or information adduced at the trial, plea hearing or other court proceedings, and shall also consider the presentence report and any other relevant information. It shall not be relevant to the imposition of enhanced punishment pursuant to this section that the defendant mistakenly believed that the recipient of the substance was 18 years of age or older, even if the mistaken belief was reasonable. Nor shall it be relevant to the imposition of enhanced punishment pursuant to this section that the defendant did not know that the recipient was pregnant.
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