Drug distribution is a felony offense in Florida and describes the act of selling or giving unlawful controlled substances, such as narcotics or prescription drugs, to others. The punishment for drug distribution under Florida law depends on the following factors: the type of the drug, the amount of the drug, the location of the distribution, the defendant’s prior criminal record, and whether children were involved. Depending on the amount seized, the State may prosecute an individual who possesses the controlled substance, with the intent to sell or distribute it for personal gain. Drug trafficking is also prohibited in the State of Florida and throughout the United States.
Elements of Drug Distribution
To prove the criminal offense of drug distribution, the prosecutor must show that the defendant knowingly participated in the sale, distribution, or trafficking of the illicit substance. The prosecutor must also show that the suspect had intent to engage in these illegal activities. Chemical analysis is also generally required through a crime lab to prove the substance in question is actually illegal.
Penalties for Drug Distribution
When the prosecutor charges drug distribution rather than drug trafficking, the case generally involves illicit drugs in smaller amounts. Possession with the intent to sell may be charged as a misdemeanor, but can also result in felony charges with stiffer penalties depending on the context of the crime in question. Intent to sell charged as a third degree felony carries with it a penalty of up to five years in prison, and fine of up to $5,000. If charged with a second degree felony, conviction may result in imprisonment of up to fifteen years, and a maximum fine of up to $10,000. Florida statutes allow for increased penalties for defendants who have already been convicted of a felony. These individuals are referred to as career criminals, or habitual felony offenders.
Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Attorney
If you have been charged with a drug crime such as drug distribution, retaining a criminal defense attorney is imperative. Accusations of drug distribution are serious, and a conviction can have life altering consequences. Fort Lauderdale criminal attorney Kenneth Padowitz provides the strategic criminal defense that is needed in these situations. Broward criminal lawyer, Kenneth Padowitz, aggressively defends criminal charges in State and Federal court. Contact our law firm, day or night, to arrange a free consultation.
Kenneth Padowitz, P.A aggressively represents clients facing drug distribution charges.