The state of Florida takes drug trafficking and the purchase of illegal drugs seriously. People who commit drug offenses in Orlando are punished harshly because of the state’s strict no-tolerance rule. If you or someone you know are facing drug charges for purchasing over 10 grams of illegal drugs, you need to contact The Law Place today. A person convicted of this kind of offense can expect to serve years in prison. It is important to fight your charges to protect your rights and freedom.
Our law firm has a team of highly skilled lawyers with over 75 years of combined experience. We have helped countless clients with their criminal defense cases and can help you too. If you are facing a drug charge, it is crucial to contact us as soon as possible. To schedule your free consultation with a skilled team member, call us now at (941)-444-4444.
Florida Law and Drug Crimes
Florida Statute 893.13 outlines how the unlawful possession, manufacture, delivery, dealing and distribution of drugs is a criminal offense. If you are caught purchasing illegal drugs, you will likely face a felony drug conviction. This is a major criminal charge that can greatly impact your life.
People charged with first-degree felonies will face the most severe penalties for their drug crimes. Drug trafficking charges and drug possession of a large quantity can see a person convicted of a first-degree felony. Following such a charge, an offender can serve up to 30 years in prison.
Furthermore, having a felony conviction on a permanent criminal record can stop offenders from attending school, receiving bank loans, traveling internationally, and more. Not only this but you will also have to pay a monetary fine worth up to $10,000. This is a great deal of money that not everyone can easily afford. Unfortunately, these fines can result in criminal offenders and their families suffering from crippling debt.
The Law Place has a team of criminal defense lawyers who can tackle these charges. Any kind of drug crime is a serious offense that professionals must tackle. Regardless of whether you are facing a drug purchasing, drug possession, or drug trafficking charge, we can help you.
Types of Controlled Substances
There is a range of controlled and illegal substances in the United States that are monitored and regulated by both the federal and state government. These substances have been categorized into lists to highlight their potential for abuse. Schedule I drugs have the least medical value and the greatest potential for abuse. Whereas Schedule V drugs are widely considered the least dangerous. This is because they aren’t considered highly addictive and are mainly used for medicinal reasons. These different types of controlled substances are outlined below.
Schedule I Drugs
When a person is caught purchasing over 10 grams of a Schedule I controlled substance drug in Orlando, they will face the harshest possible penalties. This is because most crimes involving these drugs will be charged as first-degree felonies. Not only are these drugs considered the most addictive, but they are also the most dangerous. Countless people lose their lives every year in Florida due to a drug overdose caused by an overconsumption of the following Schedule I drugs:
- LSD (acid).
- MDMA (ecstasy).
If you are caught purchasing over 10 grams of these drugs, you may have to serve a mandatory minimum sentence. This sentence will depend on the number of drugs you have purchased and have in your possession. Typically, offenders will have to serve at least three years in prison.
Schedule II Drugs
A schedule II drug is also considered to be highly addictive. These substances, however, can be prescription drugs. Therefore, although these drugs are vulnerable to abuse, they do have medicinal value. Some of these drugs include:
Schedule III Drugs
These controlled substances are not considered to be as severe as Schedule I and Schedule II drugs. This is because they are less likely to be abused and are not as addictive as other controlled substances. Some Schedule III class drugs include:
- Under 90 milligram dosages of Codeine.
Schedule IV Drugs
Schedule IV controlled substances are largely used for medicinal reasons and they are typically not considered to be addictive. Nevertheless, when a person is unlawfully caught purchasing and being in possession of these drugs, they can still be charged with a first-degree felony. The level of felony charge awarded to an offender will depend on the quantity of Schedule IV drugs they have in their possession. These drugs are frequently illegally sold in Orlando and include:
Schedule V Drugs
Finally, these Schedule V controlled substances are mainly used for medicinal purposes only. They are not generally considered to be addictive and don’t pose a huge threat to abuse. Although, purchasing large quantities of these drugs with the intent to distribute and sell can see a person convicted. For Schedule V drug crimes, an offender can face a first-degree misdemeanor charge. These charges carry less severe penalties than first-degree felony charges. For example, it is unlikely that offenders will have to serve a mandatory minimum prison sentence. Some Schedule V controlled substances include:
- Cough medicine.
Penalties for Drug Crimes in Orlando
If you are arrested for drug crimes in Orlando, it is important to know that the charge you face will depend on the type and quantity of the controlled substance involved in your case. Some of the most common charges awarded to people who commit drug offenses in Orlando have been outlined below.
First Degree Felony
A first-degree felony charge is the greatest possible felony charge in Florida. There is no degree of charge more severe than this. If you have been arrested for purchasing over 10 grams of a Schedule I drug, such as Heroin or Marijuana, you can be charged with this degree of felony. The maximum penalties for this charge include up to 30 years in prison, up to $10,000 in fines, and more. These are the most severe drug charges that you can face and that is why it is important to consult with an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Seeking professional legal representation may be your only chance of getting your charges dropped and protecting your freedoms. We understand that mistakes happen and one moment of lapsed judgment should not ruin the lives of you and your loved ones forever.
Second Degree Felony
A second-degree felony charge is another very serious charge. If you are convicted at this level in Orlando for purchasing drugs, you can expect to serve up to 15 years in prison. In addition, you will encounter up to $10,000 worth of monetary fines. Although this charge is less severe than a first-degree felony, you still may have to spend over a decade locked up. Losing such a great deal of time with your loved ones can have a hugely detrimental impact on their lives. It is essential that you fight second-degree felony charges. At The Law Place, we have helped many people get their felony charges dropped and we can help you too. Even if it’s not possible to get your case dismissed, we will fight to reduce your charges to misdemeanors. With a lesser charge, you will serve less time in jail and you have a greater chance of getting the offense expunged from your criminal record.
Third Degree Felony
If you are charged with a third-degree felony in Orlando, you are being handed the lowest level of a felony conviction. Despite this, you could still face up to five years in prison and a monetary fine worth up to $5,000. Just because this is a low-level felony charge doesn’t mean it’s not worth fighting.
Regardless of the level of your charge, you will still have “convicted felon” written on your permanent criminal record. This will impact your life greatly. Many future opportunities will no longer be available to you because of your record. For example, traveling internationally becomes problematic, schools will not take you on, employers will be hesitant about hiring you, banks will likely refuse your bank loans, and more. For these reasons, it is worth contacting a criminal defense lawyer. A lawyer will gather evidence to try and get your case dropped or reduced to a misdemeanor charge.
First Degree Misdemeanor
You can be awarded a first-degree misdemeanor charge if you are caught purchasing over 10 grams of certain controlled substances. When charged at this level, an offender can expect to serve to up one year in jail and face a fine worth up to $1,000.
Although this will still be listed on an offender’s permanent criminal record, this charge doesn’t carry the same kind of stigma as what felony charges do. Nevertheless, our lawyers still strongly advise that you fight misdemeanor charges. There may be a range of defenses applicable to your case that can get your charges dropped altogether.
How the Purchase of a Controlled Substance Is Proved
To be convicted for purchasing illegal drugs over 10 grams in Orlando, the state will need to have credible evidence to prove your actions. This may include photographic evidence of you, witness identifications, and more. If the state has not got solid evidence against you, your charges can be dismissed. This is because it must be proved beyond reasonable doubt that you were guilty of committing your accused drug crime.
At The Law Place, our lawyers have a great deal of experience building solid defense cases. When you hire one of our lawyers, they will gather evidence to dismiss the evidence being held against you. If a judge and jury can be persuaded of your innocence, your charges will be dropped.
Defenses Used in Drug Crime Cases
If you have been accused of purchasing illegal drugs in Orlando, there are a range of defenses that may be used to help your case. Some of the most commonly used defenses in cases like yours are:
- Unlawful Search and Seizure.
- Lack of Knowledge.
- Personal Use.
- Lack of Probable Cause.
Once a lawyer has examined the evidence of your case, they will then decide how to structure your defense strategy. Some defenses will be more relevant to your case than others. You can feel assured knowing that our team will use their years of experience to build you the strongest possible defense case.
Mandatory Minimum Prison Sentences for Purchasing Illegal Drugs
The mandatory minimum prison sentence that you can encounter for purchasing illegal drugs in Orlando can be as low as three years. In severe cases, an offender can be made to serve a mandatory minimum prison sentence of 25 years. The mandatory time that you will have to serve in prison will depend on your drug crime, the type of drug involved, and the quantity of the drug involved.
What to Do If You Are Arrested for Purchasing Illegal Drugs or Drug Trafficking
If you or someone you know has been arrested for purchasing illegal drugs in Orlando, it is important to remain calm. Anything you say at the scene of your arrest can be held against your case. It would be advisable to be polite to law enforcement officers, only state facts, and avoid admitting fault.
You have the right to remain silent. Once you can, you should phone our law firm. One of our lawyers can advise you on how to act and what to say to law enforcement officers. It is essential that you don’t apologize. An apology will be seen as an admission of guilt in the courtroom and this can have a huge impact on the outcome of your case.
Do I Need to Hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer?
You don’t need to hire a criminal defense lawyer if you have been arrested in Orlando, however, it can be hugely beneficial to your case. Here are seven reasons why you should hire a criminal defense lawyer from The Law Place:
- A lawyer will have a deep knowledge and understanding of Florida’s judicial system.
- Criminal defense lawyers at our firm have working relationships with prosecutors.
- Our lawyers have handled countless cases similar to yours before.
- We will work to get the penalties you face dropped or reduced.
- Hiring a lawyer will save you money in the long term.
- Our lawyers understand official law enforcement conduct and procedure.
- We are strategists who will work to ensure that you achieve the best possible outcome.
What Is the Highest Possible Fine for Drug Possession?
The highest possible fine for drug possession in Orlando is $10,000. Offenders charged with a first or second-degree felony can be made to serve this fine. This is a great sum of money that not all offenders can afford. To avoid financial difficulty, you need to contact a criminal defense lawyer to fight your charges.
Do First-Time Drug Offenders Go to Jail?
First-time drug offenders in Orlando can absolutely go to jail. The state of Florida is strict on drug crime and penalizes criminals severely. Many drug offenses will carry mandatory prison sentences. If you have been arrested and are anxious about serving jail time, you must contact one of our lawyers. The amount of time you can be made to serve will depend on the circumstances of your case. A lawyer at our law firm, however, will do all they can so that you can avoid jail. They will fight to get your charges dropped or reduced.
Contact an Orlando Drug Crimes Lawyer at The Law Place Today!
If you have been arrested in central Florida for purchasing illegal drugs, you need to contact a reputable criminal defense law firm today. You must fight your charges as soon as possible. The more time our lawyers have building your defense strategy, the greater the chance you’ve got of getting your charges dropped. What are you waiting for?
Organize your free consultation with a skilled member of our team by calling us now at (941)-444-4444.