If you were recently arrested and charged with a drug crime in Florida, or you have reason to believe you are under investigation for a drug crime, you need legal representation immediately. A conviction for even a relatively minor drug crime can result in incarceration, a lengthy term of probation, and hefty fines and costs. If you are convicted of a more serious drug crime you could be facing years in prison, forfeiture of assets, and a criminal record that will follow you for life.
If you have been charged with a drug crime in Florida, you need an experienced Florida drug defense attorney on your side to ensure that your rights, your freedom, and your future are protected. At Haas Law, we have the experience, resources, and commitment needed to protect and defend you if you are facing criminal charges in a Florida drug-related prosecution.
Florida Drug Crimes
Much like its federal counterpart, Florida law classifies illegal drugs and controlled dangerous substances (CDS) into five schedules based on their medical use and likelihood for abuse as follows:
- Schedule I. High potential for abuse and has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
- Schedule II. High potential for abuse that may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence and has a currently accepted but severely restricted medical use in treatment in the United States.
- Schedule III. A potential for abuse that is less than that of Schedules I and II and has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
- Schedule IV. Low potential for abuse relative to Schedule III and has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
- Schedule V. A low potential for abuse relative to Schedule IV and has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
Potential Penalties for Conviction of Florida Drug Crimes
The potential penalties you face if convicted of a Florida drug crime will depend on several factors, including:
- The type of drugs involved (Schedule I-V)
- The quantity of drugs involved
- Whether you are convicted of possession or the more serious offenses of manufacturing, trafficking, or distributing
- Your criminal history (or lack thereof)
- Any aggravating or mitigating circumstances
Possession of even a small amount of an illegal drug (other than marijuana) in Florida is typically charged as a third-degree felony and carries a potential sentence of up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. Possession of 20 grams or more of marijuana may also be charged as a third-degree felony, while possession of fewer than 20 grams is a first-degree misdemeanor. You may also be sentenced to probation, a drug evaluation and treatment, random drug testing, and lose your driving privileges for up to two years if convicted of drug possession in Florida.
A conviction for manufacturing, trafficking, or distributing drugs in Florida carries with it the potential for a much harsher sentence, including mandatory minimums of three to 15 years in prison and sentencing ranges up to life in prison without parole. If you are subject to a mandatory minimum sentence, keep in mind that you will have to serve the entire sentence – you do not get “good time” credit.
Do I Need a Florida Drug Defense Attorney?
If you are facing drug-related criminal charges in Florida, you should take the eventual outcome of your case seriously because it has the potential to negatively impact you for the rest of your life if you are convicted. If you have already been charged with a drug crime, you need an experienced Florida drug defense attorney immediately to ensure that your rights are protected moving forward and to begin working on your defense.
If you suspect (or know) that you are under investigation by law enforcement for drug-related crimes, do not wait to consult with an attorney. Often, the time period right before an arrest is made is when your constitutional rights need to be asserted so you can benefit from the protection they offer. Sometimes, involving an experienced attorney before an arrest can prevent the situation from resulting in an arrest altogether.
How Can a Florida Drug Defense Attorney Help Me?
Whether you are under investigation for a drug crime or have already been charged, an experienced Florida drug defense attorney can help you in many ways, including:
- Asserting your constitutional rights during an investigation, including your right to remain silent and your right to an attorney
- Preventing law enforcement authorities from contacting you unless they have a warrant
- Getting your bond lowered if it is initially set too high
- Reviewing all evidence against you and conducting an independent investigation
- Challenging violations of your rights, such as an illegal search and seizure
- Interviewing witnesses the state plans to use against you
- Preparing a defense for trial
- Negotiating a favorable plea agreement if you do not wish to go to trial
- Advocating on your behalf at a trial
- Arguing for a more lenient sentence if you are convicted at trial
Get Help from an Experienced Florida Drug Defense Attorney
If you have been charged with a drug crime in Florida, or are under investigation for one, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced Florida drug defense attorney immediately to protect yourself and begin building a successful defense.
At Haas Law, our Florida drug defense attorneys have the experience and dedication necessary to protect and defend you throughout the investigation and/or prosecution of your case. We are fully committed to aggressively defending you, your rights, and your future.
Call us at 407-755-7675, chat with us online, or submit the form on our website today.
Because we understand that time is of the essence when law enforcement authorities are investigating you, our calls are answered 24 hours a day, so you can schedule an appointment as soon as possible to discuss your legal options.