No matter how minor a drug charge may appear, the consequences that may result can be extremely serious, permanent and life-altering. Being convicted for possession of even a small amount of marijuana can be accompanied by serious consequences. Drug crimes can carry, in addition to a harsh social stigma, lasting consequences such as adversely affecting future employment or even a driver’s license suspension. Penalties can also range from one (1) year in jail for misdemeanor marijuana possession to minimum mandatory sentences in state prison of three (3) years or more.
Drug crimes are criminal offenses that relate to substances that are controlled by the laws of the state of Florida. The spectrum of drug offenses is extremely varied and can include anything from common illegal narcotics such as marijuana, cocaine or heroin as well as prescription drugs Hydrocodon, Oxycodone, Morphine.
Marijuana Possession/Possession of Cannabis
Perhaps the most common drug-related charge, can lead to facing either a misdemeanor or felony depending on the amount (a person possessing 20 grams or less faces a misdemeanor charge).
Possession of Drugs
Possession of drugs may be the least serious of all drug crimes. However, you may still face misdemeanor or felony charges. Penalties and consequences will vary depending on the type of drug possessed and the amount possessed.
Possession with Intent
When you are charged with possession with intent it is likely that you were arrested with more drugs than would be for personal use, or to be used by one person. The prosecutor will assume that you were planning to sell the excess drugs.
Drug paraphernalia is typically charged as a misdemeanor and it is added on to a charge for possession. Drug paraphernalia includes anything used to manufacture or use drugs such as syringes, scales, bongs or pipes.
Grow House/Drug Cultivation
Drug cultivation means having and/or preparing “any soil or hydroponic medium for the planting of a controlled substance or the tending and care or harvesting of a controlled substance.” Any crime involving drug cultivation can carry extremely heavy penalties.
Drug trafficking involves the sale, delivery, possession or manufacture of specified types of drugs over a specified quantity. Trafficking offenses carry extremely severe penalties according to Florida law. People arrested and charged with drug trafficking will face mandatory minimum penalties that range from three (3) years to life in state prison.
Manufacture of Drugs
The manufacture of drugs or controlled substances is usually a felony offense in Florida. Penalties, minimums and maximums, depend largely on the type of drug manufactured, the amount of the drug manufactured and where (location) the drug was manufactured. For example, manufacturing drugs within 1,000 feet of a school or place of worship can bring about harsher penalties, such as calling for minimum mandatory penalties of three (3) years in state prison.
Prescription Drug Crimes
People tend to think of drug crimes as those involving more traditional illegal narcotics such as marijuana or cocaine. Prescription drugs or controlled substances that are possessed without a valid prescription is a crime (possession of a controlled substance). Defined by Florida Statute section 893.03 include prescription medication such as Hydrocodone (Vicodin), Oxycodone (OxyContin), Xanax, anabolic steroids and MDMA (Ecstasy). Most commonly, these offenses are a third-degree felony but may escalate to trafficking charges depending on the amount. Once someone is charged with trafficking prescription drugs, minimum mandatory prison sentences come into play.
When charged with a drug crime, no matter how insignificant it may seem, it is imperative to seek the help of a Miami criminal defense attorney as soon as possible in order to ensure your rights are protected and every possible defense is investigated and explored.
Led by attorney Daniel Izquierdo, the Izquierdo Law Firm will work tirelessly to ensure that your rights are protected. I understand that any person charged with a crime is innocent until they are proven guilty. Izquierdo Law Firm will seek justice in your case and do so in an Aggressive, Personalized and Compassionate manner.
No matter how severe the charge may be, the consequences that may result are serious–both in the short term and long term. Izquierdo Law Firm, a Miami Criminal Defense Law Firm, understands the stress that this can cause a person and their loved ones.
Do You Find Yourself In Need Of A Miami Criminal Defense Lawyer?
If you've recently found yourself in need of an experienced criminal defense attorney in Miami you should contact me as soon as possible. Please feel free to contact me online or to call my Coral Gables office directly at 305.707.7345. You can also request my free book "The Ultimate Guide To Fighting Criminal Charges In Florida", a detailed download discussing the myths, rumors and hearsay often associated with criminal charges, what to expect from your criminal court proceedings and important steps you must take to battle your charges.