Pinellas County does not take drug charges lightly. If you were arrested or are facing misdemeanor or felony charges after a drug arrest, you need to enlist the help of a defense attorney familiar with these cases as soon as possible. Having the right team of defense lawyers on your side can make all the difference in your case. You may face fines, probation, and even prison time if the courts convict you of a serious drug crime. We may be able to reduce your sentence, or even prevent your conviction.
The earlier you call the drug crime defense lawyers in Pinellas County at Goldman Wetzel, the sooner we can go to work protecting your rights and fighting to clear your name. If you were arrested or are currently facing charges, call our Pinellas County office at 727-828-3900 today. We offer free case evaluations.
We Represent Clients Facing a Wide Variety of Drug Charges
Florida can charge accused offenders with a seemingly endless number of drug-related offenses, and each of these charges comes with its own penalties. We are familiar with all the state’s drug laws, and can help you if you face accusations or an indictment. Some of the most common drug charges we see include:
- Possession of drugs
- Possession of drug paraphernalia
- Distribution of drugs
- Drug trafficking
- Armed drug trafficking
- Manufacturing drugs
- Unlawful possession or sale of prescription drugs
- Illegal use of a drug
It is important to note that the state views some drugs differently than others. The penalties for possession of cocaine, crack, or heroin, for example, are more severe than for possession of marijuana. You can also expect stiffer penalties if convicted of charges involving methamphetamines, ecstasy/molly, GHB, PCP, or similar drugs.
What Penalties Might I Face If Convicted of a Drug Crime in Pinellas County?
While the penalty varies based on a number of factors, you could face jail time and significant fines if convicted of even the most minor drug charge. In addition to the penalties listed here, almost anyone convicted of a drug charge in Florida receives an automatic one-year driver’s license suspension.
As an example of the penalties you could face, consider some common drug charges in Florida:
If you receive a conviction for possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana, you may face up to a year in prison and a maximum fine of $1,000. The possession of drug paraphernalia carries the same maximum sentence. A conviction for possession of more than 20 grams (but less than 25 pounds) can lead to five years in prison and a maximum fine of $5,000.
If you receive a conviction for possession of less than 28 grams of cocaine, you may face up to five years in prison, five years’ probation, and a maximum fine of $5,000.
You may receive a conviction on trafficking charges even if you intended to use all the drugs you had for personal use. If you have more than 25 pounds of marijuana or 28 grams of cocaine at the time of your arrest, the State Attorney may opt for drug trafficking charges instead of possession.
This is important because trafficking is a first-degree felony with much more serious penalties. Depending on the drug, there may also be mandatory minimum sentences that apply. A cocaine trafficking conviction, for example, includes a minimum three-year prison sentence.
What Is the First Thing I Should Do After a Drug Arrest?
As you can see, you do not want to face the penalties associated with a Florida drug charge conviction. If police accuse you of a drug-related crime or you face an indictment, you need to take action as soon as possible.
Give us a call before you agree to talk to police or investigators, or call us immediately following your loved one’s arrest. The earlier you have a reputable defense attorney on your side, the better off your case might be. We can go to work on your case without delay, protecting your rights, accompanying you in police interrogations, and collecting evidence to prove your innocence or support the reduction of charges against you.
What Defenses Might Goldman Wetzel Use in My Case?
The way we approach your defense depends on the specific details of your case. However, in every case, our lawyers will immediately launch a full investigation to understand the best possible defense, and represent you in pretrial negotiations and in court.
We try to get out in front of the charges, attempting to convince the prosecutor to reduce or drop the charges. In other cases, we can request the state approve a diversionary program that requires you to attend drug treatment. Once you complete this and other requirements, the District Attorney will agree to drop any potential charges related to the incident.
If your case goes to court, some of the most common defense arguments we use in Pinellas County drug crime cases include:
- The police arrested the wrong person
- The drugs were not yours and you had no knowledge of them (such as if they were found under the passenger seat of your car)
- The police did not have probable cause, leading to unlawful search and seizure
- Illegal collection of evidence
Our attorneys, who work together on every case, have experience on both sides of the aisle. Summer Goldman used to work as a prosecutor for the State Attorney’s Office in Pinellas County, which means we have insider knowledge of how the other side operates. Maribeth Wetzel has dedicated the entirety of her career to defending those who made a mistake or who were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Goldman Wetzel: Drug Crime Defense Attorneys in Pinellas County
If you need knowledgeable and skilled drug crime defense attorneys on your side, you need the legal team at Goldman Wetzel. Call our Pinellas County office today at 727-828-3900 to get immediate assistance with your case or to schedule a complimentary case review.