Miami Drug Sale Attorney
Are you facing a drug sale charge in Miami? Feeling anxious, confused, and worried about your future is natural. Crimes related to illegal drugs can come with severe penalties in Florida, like jail time and heavy fines. Although the possession of a small amount of a drug, like marijuana, can be charged as a misdemeanor, the sale of a controlled substance in Florida is usually a felony. Drug sale and drug distribution convictions have collateral consequences, such as driver’s license suspensions, licensing issues, and immigration concerns. Due to the severity of these drug offenses and the possible consequences, involving an experienced Miami drug sale attorney is crucial as soon as possible after an arrest.
What is a Controlled Substance?
According to Florida Statute 893.13, it is a crime for a person to sell or deliver a controlled substance to another person. But what is a controlled substance?
A controlled substance is a type of drug that the government regulates. Many controlled substances are typically illegal to possess, use, or sell, almost under any circumstances. Other controlled substances are illegal to possess without a valid prescription or license. The government controls these substances because they can be dangerous and have a high potential for abuse.
Controlled substances are classified into one of five categories, known as schedules. These schedules are based on the substance’s medical use, potential for abuse, and safety. Schedule I substances are considered the most dangerous, with a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use. Schedule V substances are considered the least harmful, with a low potential for abuse and accepted medical use. The schedules are as follows:
- Schedule I: substances with a high potential for abuse, no accepted medical use, and a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision. Examples include heroin, LSD, and marijuana.
- Schedule II: substances with a high potential for abuse, a currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions, and a high potential for psychological or physical dependence. Examples include cocaine, methamphetamine, and fentanyl.
- Schedule III: substances with a lower potential for abuse than Schedule I or II substances, a currently accepted medical use, and a moderate to low potential for psychological or physical dependence. Examples include some prescription painkillers, anabolic steroids, and ketamine.
- Schedule IV: substances with a low potential for abuse relative to Schedule III substances, a currently accepted medical use, and a low potential for psychological or physical dependence. Examples include some benzodiazepines and some anti-anxiety medications.
- Schedule V: substances with the lowest potential for abuse, a currently accepted medical use, and a low potential for psychological or physical dependence. Examples include some cough syrups containing small amounts of codeine.
Delivery vs. Sale of a Controlled Substance
In the context of drug crimes, the terms “sale” and “delivery” have different meanings. A sale of drugs refers to the act of selling or offering to sell a controlled substance to another person. This includes selling drugs out of one’s home or on the street or negotiating the sale of drugs with another person. When you sell a controlled substance, you transfer the drug to another person in exchange for money, something of value or promise of money.
On the other hand, the delivery of a controlled substance does not require an exchange for something of value. Simply transferring or attempting to transfer controlled substances to another person constitutes delivery.
What are the Elements of Sale or Delivery of Drugs?
To be convicted of these criminal offenses, the prosecution must be able to prove each of these elements beyond a reasonable doubt.:
- The defendant sold or delivered a substance
- The substance the defendant sold or delivered was a controlled substance
- The defendant knew that the substance was a controlled substance.
The specific penalties for this crime will depend on the type and amount of the controlled substance involved, the defendant’s criminal history, and other factors.
Potential Penalties for Conviction of Delivery or Sale of a Controlled Substance?
The maximum and minimum sentence for a drug sale charge depends on several factors. The most important factors are the specific drug sold, the amount, and the location of the sale. Sales within a thousand feet of a school or place of worship, for example, carry mandatory minimum penalties of three (3) years in state prison. The sale or delivery of a controlled substance is usually charged as a second-degree felony, meaning the maximum sentence is 15 years in state prison. If, however, a person is charged with the sale or delivery of more than 10 grams of most Schedule I controlled substances, they will face a first-degree felony, meaning the maximum sentence is 30 years in state prison. The sale or delivery of Schedule III and Schedule IV drugs, Schedule III hallucinogens, amphetamines, and some Schedule II drugs, are third-degree felonies. Last but not least, the sale or delivery of any Schedule V drug is a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a year in jail.
Contact an Experienced Miami Drug Sale Lawyer
If you or a loved one has been charged with the sale or delivery of drugs in Florida, it is critical to consult with an experienced Miami drug sale lawyer as soon as possible. You need the counsel of an experienced criminal lawyer to guide you through the process and maximize your chances of resolving your controlled substance case with a favorable outcome.
Convictions for crimes involving the delivery or sale of a controlled substance can negatively impact your future with lasting consequences. With decades of combined experience, our drug crime attorneys can protect your rights and aggressively defend you. We believe this is necessary to achieve the best possible outcomes for our clients.
By taking the immediate action of hiring a criminal defense attorney, you are minimizing the chances that your criminal case will have lasting consequences for your career, personal life, and reputation.
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