In Florida, it is unlawful to possess any amount of narcotics, substances, drugs or chemicals, more commonly referred to as Controlled Substances. Some examples of these drugs include;
- Marijuana (cannabis);
Penalties for Possession of a Controlled Substance in Florida
Possession of a Controlled Substance in Florida is classified as a third degree felony, which is punishable by up to five (5) years in prison, five (5) years probation, and a $5,000.00 fine.
Pursuant to Florida Statute 775.084, a previous conviction of Possession of a Controlled Substance may be used to classify a defendant as a Habitual Felony Offender, which will double the maximum possible prison sentence from five (5) years to ten (10) years.
Pretrial Intervention for Possession of a Controlled Substance in Florida
The charge of Possession of a Controlled Substance in Florida may be referred to the Pretrial Intervention (PTI) Program in Florida. The PTI Program is run by the State Attorney’s Office in any particular county. PTI is generally reserved for defendant’s with a minimal prior criminal history.
The PTI Program is similar to probation, in the sense that a defendant must report to an officer, submit to random drug tests, participate in drug treatment, and comply with any specific requirements ordered by the State Attorney’s Office. The potential of having a Possession of a Controlled Substance charge referred to the PTI Program requires details negotiations between a skilled Jacksonville Criminal Defense Attorney and the State Attorney’s Office.
If a defendant successfully completes the PTI Program, all criminal charges will be dropped.
Defenses to Possession of a Controlled Substance
In addition to pretrial and trial motions, common defenses to Possession of a Controlled Substance include:
- Constructive Possession;
- Lack of Knowledge;
- Fourth Amendment Violation;
- Invalid Search Warrant;
- Invalid Consent to Search;
- Invalid K-9 search or “alert”;
This list of several common defenses to Possession of a Controlled Substance is not exhaustive. Each case must be analyzed based on its own specific facts and circumstances.
Contact Duval County Drug Possession Attorney Michael Rainka
If you have been arrested or charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance in Florida, including Jacksonville, Duval County, St. Johns, County, Nassau County, Clay County, Flagler County, or Northeast Florida, contact Rainka Law now. Michael Rainka is a skilled and aggressive Drug Crime Attorney in Jacksonville. The initial consultation is always free.