The state of Florida takes illegal drug use very seriously.
If you face a possession of a controlled substance charge, you likely have many questions.
1. What does the state consider controlled substances?
Florida law follows the federal schedule of drugs. Considered the most harmful, Schedule I drugs include cocaine, heroin and LSD. The statute makes it illegal to possess these drugs. A growing number of drug arrests involve Schedule II drugs, such as valium, oxycontin and codeine. These require a medical prescription possess. Without one, you will get charged with a felony.
2. What penalties might I face?
The penalties and fees you face depend on the drug and the amount of it. If you get charged with a first-degree felony, it may mean 30 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. Second-degree convictions drop the prison time down to up to 15 years. Additional consequences may include community service, drug counseling and losing your driving license.
3. What defense options do I have?
Drug offenses often have more complexity than a person might think. A key defense revolves around how officers discovered a controlled substance. An illegal search or seizure or bad warrant may lead to a case dismissal. Prosecutors also have to prove that you had prior knowledge of the substances present and that they belonged to you, as well as that you had no prescription in your name.
A drug conviction comes with long-lasting effects that may alter your life. Seeking help and discussing your unique situation may lead to a better resolution.