Florida law takes drug possession charges seriously and if you’re caught with a controlled substance, you could be facing serious consequences. Among other things, if you’re convicted of drug possession, you may be facing jail time, large fines, probation and the loss of your driving privileges. A drug conviction could also damage your personal and professional reputations and endanger your livelihood.
Not all drug charges end up with a conviction. The state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt certain sufficient evidence exists and if they can’t, the case could be dismissed. An attorney will help you argue the circumstances of your arrest possibly resulting in a reduction or elimination of your charges.
Defenses to drug possession charges
Your lawyer can determine which defense might apply to challenge the factors of your arrest. These might include:
- Illegal search and seizure–Legitimate reasons for the initial search and seizure need to be present. If the way in which officers obtained the evidence was unlawful, but resulted in your arrest, the charges could be dismissed, even if a controlled substance was found.
- Drugs belong to someone else–An argument could be made that the drugs in question belonged to someone else, were planted or you had no knowledge that the drugs were in your vehicle or home. The prosecutor must prove that the drugs belonged to you.
- Credibility of the crime lab–An attorney may challenge the lab where the drugs might have been tested.
- Entrapment–You could have been lured to commit a crime you may not have otherwise committed.
- Drugs are missing–After an arrest, drug evidence may pass through many hands and travel to and from other locations. Are the drugs in question still in evidence?
- Lack of knowledge–You didn’t know the drugs were in your possession or that the substance was even a drug.
Additionally, the nature of your charge, prior criminal history and potentially the availability of treatment programs may be factors in your case. The details of your arrest are crucial and will help your attorney determine the most appropriate defense strategy to pursue the best possible outcome.