Florida takes drug crimes very seriously. If you're caught with a controlled substance and charged with drug possession, you're facing hefty fines and penalties. But if it can be proven that you were trafficking the drugs in your possession, the consequences you face are much more severe.
A drug trafficking conviction means a court can prove that you knowingly possessed a large amount of an illegal substance with the intent to distribute and sell the drug or that you knowingly brought the drug into the state. It must also be proven that the substances you were found with were in fact, banned substances, which may involve testing them in a lab.
Penalties for drug trafficking
The penalties for drug trafficking are stiff. The type of substance and the amount of it found in your possession at the time of your arrest determine your prison time and penalties.
For example, the penalties for the trafficking of marijuana may include:
- For offenses involving more than 25 pounds of marijuana (but less than 2,000 pounds), or 300 or more marijuana plants (but not more than 2,000 plants), the penalties include a minimum jail sentence of three years and a $25,000 fine.
- For offenses involving 2,000 pounds or more of marijuana (but less than 10,000 pounds), or 2,000 or more marijuana plants (but not more than 10,000 plants), the penalties include a minimum jail sentence of seven years and a $50,000 fine.
- For offenses involving 10,000 pounds or more of marijuana, or 10,000 or more marijuana plants, the penalties include a minimum jail sentence of 15 years and a $200,000 fine.
However, it is important to remember that these are merely the penalties for marijuana trafficking under Florida law. In fact, depending on the alleged drugs involved, the penalties may be different -- and possibly even worse.
In addition to jail time and costly fines, a drug trafficking charge could also negatively impact your personal or business reputation and affect your livelihood. It's important to educate yourself about the potential penalties you may be facing and involve legal counsel to ensure the best possible outcome.