Drug possession is a serious offense in the state of Florida. If police find you with a controlled substance as specified by Florida state laws, you may be charged with a third-degree felony and face stiff penalties of jail time and fines. Taking a chance with controlled substances can have life-changing repercussions, and if you are facing such charges, it may be in your best interest to contact a qualified attorney.
An experienced criminal lawyer may be able to assist you if you are facing serious charges like drug possession. At Leader & Leader P.A., we have more than six decades of combined legal experience, and we will put it to work for you while defending your rights.
Call us today at 954-523-2020 to schedule an initial consultation with a DUI attorney in Fort Lauderdale. We are available 24 hours per day, and we can assess the details of your case, as well as determine the best way to proceed. Read on for facts you need to know regarding drug possession laws in Florida.
How a Florida State Prosecutor Determines Drug Possession
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are three key aspects a prosecutor uses to establish the nature of drug possession charges. First, the prosecutor is required to offer evidence that the drugs confiscated are a controlled substance as defined by state law. This scientific analysis usually takes place in a crime laboratory.
Second, the prosecutor must demonstrate that the defendant knew or should have known about the nature of the substance he or she possessed. Finally, the prosecutor is required to prove that the defendant had control of the drugs. This is usually easier to prove if police find the drugs on the body of the accused, but it is possible that the prosecutor can link the drugs in other ways, such as proving they were present on a property controlled by the accused.
Florida Drug Possession Penalties
There is a wide range of penalties and sentences covering drug offenses. According to NORML, the degree of punishment for drug possession in Florida depends on the type of controlled substance found and the scope of the crime. For example, if a judge finds you guilty of a second-degree misdemeanor, you may face a 60-day jail sentence.
A first-degree misdemeanor can earn a sentence of up to one full year. A third degree felony can earn the guilty party a five-year prison sentence, as well as a fine of up to $10,000. A judge may increase the sentence for various reasons, but the state of Florida is especially harsh with repeat offenders, whom they label “career criminals.”
If you are facing criminal charges, give Leader & Leader P.A. a call at 954-523-2020. We will schedule a free initial consultation to evaluate your charges and provide you with insight on what to expect.
Our attorneys have more than 60 years of combined legal experience. If you are facing serious charges, don’t wait to speak with a qualified DWI lawyer in Fort Lauderdale; call us today, and let us know what we can do for you.