Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense & Personal Injury Attorneys
Is Using Drugs a Different Charge Than Selling Drugs?

Is Using Drugs a Different Charge Than Selling Drugs?

Over the past decade, drug crime penalties have increased in severity. Even at the federal level, drug laws prohibit the possession and distribution of drugs like marijuana, methamphetamine, ecstasy, cocaine, and heroin. In both the federal and state criminal justice systems, the penalties vary significantly if a person is charged with simply possessing a controlled substance versus if a person is charged with distributing them. The Fort Lauderdale drug crime defense attorneys at Rudenberg and Glasser, P.A. have put together a list of the various penalties for using drugs and for selling drugs in Florida.

Florida Drug Possession Laws

Using drugs or drug possession is an offense committed by someone who didn’t manufacture, distribute, or sell the controlled substance, but instead is only charged for using it. Simply for drug possession, the charges can vary significantly depending on the circumstances of the crime.

Drug possession charges in Florida include the following:

  • 1st Degree Misdemeanor Possession: This can be charged for up to 20 grams of marijuana, (except for medical marijuana). This is subject to at least one year in jail, plus court costs. Those with at least four prior convictions may be sentenced to one year in jail, mandatory treatment, or home detention.
  • 3rd Degree Felony: This can be charged for possessing more than 20 grams of marijuana. A person may face up to 5 years in prison and $5,000 in fines.
  • 1st Degree Felony: This is when a person has more than 25 lbs. of marijuana, more than 28 grams of cocaine, more than 10 grams of MDMA/ecstasy, more than 1 gram LSD, or more than 4 grams heroin/opiate. A person may face up to 30 years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines.

Florida Drug Distribution Laws

The state of Florida has a separate set of laws addressing drug distribution. In such cases, a prosecutor must show that the defendant “knowingly” participated in drug trafficking activities and possessed large amounts of a controlled substance with the intent to sell. Drug distribution can result in a variety of penalties.

Drug distribution charges in Florida include the following:

  • 1st Degree Felony: Maximum of 30 years' imprisonment. The penalties will vary depending on the type of drug and the quality of the drug involved in the trafficking activities.
  • 2nd Degree Felony: This may result in a term of imprisonment for up to 15 years and a fine in of up to $10,000.
  • 3rd Degree Felony: The term of imprisonment can last for up to 5 years and may require a fine of up to $5,000.

Experienced Fort Lauderdale Drug Crime Defense Attorneys. Call Today (954) 543-1788

Regardless of whether you are accused of using or selling drugs, the penalties can affect your freedom, future, and financial security. For that reason, it is vital to have an experienced attorney on your side who can protect your rights and get the best possible results for your case. At Rudenberg and Glasser, P.A., we have extensive experience handling a variety of complex drug crime cases. You can be sure that your rights will be aggressively defended and that we will work toward getting your charges reduced or even dismissed. If you’ve been arrested for drug possession or drug distribution, contact our drug crime defense attorneys in Fort Lauderdale, FL as soon as possible. We are available to speak with you and answer your questions 24/7.

At Rudenberg and Glasser, P.A., we are proud to offer outstanding representation for our clients in Fort Lauderdale and surrounding areas. Call us today for a case review at (954) 543-1788!


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