Arrests for drug possession, sale, and trafficking can result in imprisonment, fines, and other major repercussions. If you or your loved one has recently been arrested or indicted for a drug-related charge, our drug crime defense lawyers in Bradenton at Goldman Wetzel can help.
With over three decades of experience on both sides of the justice system, we have the skills, resources, and tenacity to assist you with any type of felony or misdemeanor drug charge. Contact our office at 941-405-5193 to speak with one our attorneys today.
What Are Some Common Types of Drug Charges in Florida?
Possession of substances like marijuana, crack, cocaine, meth, and illegal prescription drugs is the most common type of drug-related offense in Florida. The drug laws are extremely comprehensive and there are actually dozens of offenses and aggravated offenses that the prosecutor could charge you with.
Our firm represents people accused of all types of drug crimes, including:
- Possession of controlled substances
- Possession of paraphernalia
- Cultivation of marijuana
- Manufacturing narcotics
- Possession with intent to sell
- Doctor shopping
- Unlawful possession or sale of prescription drugs
- Drug trafficking
What Are the Potential Penalties for Drug Charges?
The courts take numerous factors into consideration when sentencing a defendant for drug-related offenses, including the type, schedule, and amount of controlled substance involved, as well as your criminal history.
The location of the alleged drug transaction also impacts penalties. The state will escalate penalties when the transaction takes place within 1,000 feet of a school, park, state-sponsored housing development (“housing projects”), or community center. Also, when the weight goes over a certain amount, it will trigger a mandatory minimum sentence if convicted.
For example, cocaine, a Schedule II drug, can result in the following penalties, per Florida Statute § 893.135:
Less than 28 grams: If you are found with less than 28 grams, the state will deem the offense “possession,” a third-degree felony. Penalties include five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
More than 28 grams: In cases where the cocaine amounts to 28 grams or more, the state will label it “trafficking in cocaine,” a first-degree felony. This can mean up to 30 years in prison and a huge fine. It will also trigger a minimum sentence, depending on the amount:
- More than 28 grams, but less than 200 grams: minimum term of imprisonment of three years and a $50,000 fine.
- More than 200 grams, but less than 400 grams: minimum term of imprisonment of seven years and a $100,000 fine.
- More than 400 grams, but less than 150 kilograms: minimum term of imprisonment of 15 years and a $250,000 fine.
- More than 150 kilograms: life in prison without the chance for parole.
Convictions also mean many other penalties and sanctions, such as a suspended driver’s license, loss of professional licenses, probation, drug and alcohol classes, community service, and a permanently tarnished record that could affect your entire future.
Penalties for drug crimes are quite severe. You need a criminal defense team that knows the ins and outs of drug cases and how to successfully navigate the criminal justice system. Call our office to speak to a drug crime legal team in Bradenton. We can tell you exactly what you are up against, what your legal options are, and how to protect your best interests.
How Do I Fight Drug Charges?
First, do not provide more than your basic information to the officers. You could inadvertently say something to damage your case. Inform the investigator that you want to have your attorney present. Then call 941-405-5193 and one of our attorneys can come to your aid. If you call us right away, we can likely attend your first appearance to facilitate your bond arrangements. In some cases, we may be able to help you avoid formal charges altogether, or at least get the charges reduced.
An aggressive drug crime defense team and a solid defense strategy are your best weapons when it comes to fighting drug charges. When you work us, attorneys Summer Goldman and Maribeth Wetzel will explore the options and develop a plan of action that will bring about the best possible outcome for you, be that a dismissal or acquittal, reduced charges, a plea bargain, or probation instead of jail time.
What Kinds of Defenses Are Available for Drug Crimes?
Each drug case is different, and we will discuss which defenses are most suitable for your individual case. Some defenses are affirmative (e.g., you were in possession, but not unlawfully so), while others are negative (e.g., an absolute denial of the crime, you were framed). Below are just a few examples of defenses we may use:
- Lack of evidence
- The drugs were not in your constructive possession
- Illegal search and seizure
- Lack of knowledge
- The drugs belong to someone else
- Officers obtained the evidence as a result of an overdose
- Evidence tampering
- Violation of constitutional rights
- Officers planted the drugs on you
- You had a prescription
- Crime lab analysis mistakes
Talk to Our Drug Crime Defense Lawyers in Bradenton Today — For FREE.
Goldman Wetzel accepts drug crime cases in Bradenton and throughout Florida. Summer, a former prosecutor, and Maribeth, a career defense lawyer, are seasoned attorneys committed to providing their clients with top quality legal representation and counsel. Our clients praise us often for the exceptional service we provide. We will protect your rights, ensure you get a fair hearing, and try to resolve the case in your favor.
Contact our office at 941-405-5193 and speak to one of our representatives about your case.