Drug Crimes Lawyer in Orlando
Drug offenses are serious crimes. If you’ve been accused of a drug crime, you are undoubtedly facing stress and uncertainty. Drug crimes in Florida can be prosecuted under both federal and state laws, and the penalties can be severe. If you’ve been arrested for a drug crime in the Orlando area, it is important to contact a qualified criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
What Constitutes a Drug Crime in Florida?
In Florida, a drug crime can include any of the following criminal offenses, as well as others:
- Possession with Intent to Sell
- Prescription Drug Fraud
As with any crime, the prosecution must prove each element of a drug crime beyond a reasonable doubt to obtain a conviction. For example, the state must prove the following three elements beyond a reasonable doubt to convict a defendant of drug possession:
- The illegal nature of the substance as defined under Florida law
- The defendant knew or should have known of the nature of the substance
- The defendant had control of the drug
Drug Crimes Can Include Prescription Drugs
Drug crime laws in Florida encompass drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, and heroin. The laws in Florida also prohibit possession of prescriptions medications without a valid prescription. Florida Statute, Section 893.13(6)(a) makes it illegal to be in possession of a controlled substance unless it was obtained by a practitioner or by a valid prescription.
If you are arrested for a drug crime associated with prescription drugs you could face the same penalties as in other drug cases with the additional charge of fraud.
Penalties can be Severe
Under Florida law, drug crimes are serious offenses and will be prosecuted aggressively. The penalty and fine associated with any drug crime conviction depends upon the type of drug at issue, the amount of drug at issue, and what the defendant intended to do with the drug. The court will also consider past drug crimes convictions and felonies and, if present, will result in harsher penalties.
Penalties for drug crimes can range in severity from a misdemeanor, which carries a punishment of up to one year in prison and up to $5,000 in fines, to a first-degree felony with prison time of up to 30 years and fines up to $10,000.
How a Qualified Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help
If you have been arrested or are under investigation for a drug crime, it is important to speak with an attorney as soon as possible. Conviction of a drug crime can have a life-long impact on your reputation and career. Attorney Mark Bakay and his team at The Law Offices of Mark Bakay, can speak with you about the specific facts of your case and any defenses available to you under Florida law.
Authoritative Sources: Florida Statute, Section 893.13