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Clearwater Criminal Lawyer > Blog > Drug Crime > What Should I Know About Florida Drug Charges?

What Should I Know About Florida Drug Charges?

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Florida has a long history of dealing with drugs, from the “Cocaine Cowboys” of the 1970s and 1980s to the “pill mills” of the 1990s and 2000s. Because of this, today’s prosecutors pursue drug charges very aggressively. If you have been arrested and found to be in possession of drugs, you can face significant penalties, but you may also face consequences you did not anticipate. Contacting an experienced attorney at King Law Group can help clarify your options if you have been arrested for any crime involving drugs. 

The “Weight Of The Mixture”

If a person is arrested for a drug offense, two main factors will determine the charges that will actually be levied against them. One is whether the drug in question is “scheduled” – in other words, whether the drug is listed as a controlled substance on the lists created by the federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA). For example, fentanyl is considered a Schedule I controlled substance, which means that it has a high potential for abuse and very little medical usage (beyond acting as a painkiller).  

The second factor is the overall weight of the ‘mixture.’ Very often, drugs have been ‘mixed’ with each other or with another ingredient, such as baking soda or flour. It is the total weight of the mixture that matters when law enforcement is deciding how to handle your specific case. If, for example, a person is caught with a mixture of powdered cocaine and flour weighing 30 grams, but only 5 grams of cocaine are present, that person may still be charged with a more serious crime because of the total weight of the mixture. 

Trafficking Charges Do Not Require Intent

Most people think of the film “Scarface,” or of large drug cartels, when discussing drug trafficking, but in Florida, individuals may face trafficking charges under certain scenarios. In Florida, a drug trafficking charge does not require any intent, it just requires an individual to be found in possession or control of a certain amount of the drug. 

For example, if an individual is found with 30 grams of cocaine in their possession but had absolutely no intention of selling the cocaine, they can still be charged with trafficking cocaine and face a mandatory 3 years in prison and a $50,000 fine. Each drug varies in the weight required to reach the trafficking amount as well as the punishment required for years in prison and large monetary fine. 

Contact A Clearwater Drug Offenses Attorney

Drug related crimes have sentences that can range from misdemeanors to first-degree life felonies. If you have been arrested for a drug crime, it is crucial that you contact a Clearwater drug crime attorney from the King Law Group as quickly as possible. We are ready and willing to try and assist you with your case. Contact our offices today at (727) 538-4265, or use our website, for a free consultation. 

Resource:

leg.state.fl.us/STATUTES/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0800-0899/0893/Sections/0893.135.html

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