Drug Trafficking Defense by an Experienced Criminal Lawyer in St. Petersburg, FL
Aggressive legal representation for individuals charged with the most serious drug crimes
All drug charges are serious, but drug trafficking convictions carry the longest prison terms and most substantial fines. The most egregious drug trafficking violations are capital offenses that can lead to life imprisonment or punishment by death. But even lesser drug trafficking charges result in a minimum of three to 25 years in prison if convicted. When the stakes are so high, your legal defense is of the utmost importance. At the law office of Joseph Montrone, Jr., P.A., I defend clients in all types of drug cases. As a former prosecutor in the St. Petersburg area, I have a window into the nature of law enforcement and the tactics and strategies used by those intent on sending you to prison. Anyone charged with drug trafficking needs the immediate assistance of a seasoned criminal defense attorney who can forcefully defend their rights.
Drug trafficking under Florida law applies to many controlled substances
Drug trafficking occurs when the amount of a drug involved meets or exceeds the quantity required for trafficking under Florida law. The person charged must also knowingly sell, purchase, manufacture, deliver or bring the drug into the state, or be in actual or constructive possession of such drug. Trafficking quantities vary based on the type of drug involved. Unfortunately, the minimum quantities for drug charges related to trafficking are often considerably less than one might imagine. Consider the following:
- Cannabis trafficking — In excess of 25 pounds of cannabis, or 300 or more cannabis plants, is a first-degree felony. Depending on the quantity, the penalties may include a mandatory minimum prison sentence of three to 20 years and a fine of $25,000 to $200,000 upon conviction.
- Cocaine trafficking — A first-degree felony charge may result if 28 grams or more is involved. Depending on the quantity, the penalties may include a mandatory minimum prison sentence of three to 20 years and a fine of $50,000 to $200,000 upon conviction. If 150 kilograms or more are involved, life imprisonment and the death penalty are possible if someone died.
- Amphetamine trafficking — Felony in the first degree can be charged for 14 grams or more of amphetamine or methamphetamine. Depending on the quantity, these charges may carry a mandatory minimum prison sentence of three to 20 years and a fine of $50,000 to $250,000 upon conviction. Capital punishment is possible in other situations.
- Trafficking in illegal drugs — A first-degree felony may be charged when 4 grams or more of morphine, opium, oxycodone, hydrocodone, hydromorphone or heroin are involved. Depending on the quantity, the penalties may include a mandatory minimum prison sentence of three to 25 years and a fine of $50,000 to $500,000 upon conviction. If 30 kilograms or more are involved and someone dies, life imprisonment or capital punishment is possible.
Felony trafficking charges may also apply to various other controlled substances, based on minimum quantities specified under Florida law.
If you are charged with drug trafficking in the St. Petersburg, FL area, your freedom may depend upon the efforts of a skilled criminal defense lawyer. An attorney who understands the drug laws and is a seasoned litigator will be able to challenge your arrest on constitutional grounds when available, suppressing evidence, presenting alibis and countering possession or other claims by the prosecution.
Contact a drug trafficking lawyer in St. Petersburg, FL who understands the local court system
At the law office of Joseph Montrone, Jr., P.A., I defend clients charged with drug trafficking and other drug law violations. A free initial consultation is provided. Contact me online or call my office at 727-888-0102.