Methamphetamine was the subject of the popular television show Breaking Bad. It is a powerful and highly addictive central nervous system stimulant that is also known as crystal meth. It is taken by snorting, smoking, or injecting. It creates an illusory sense of wellbeing and confidence. Its effects usually last for 6-8 hours, but they can last for a maximum of 24 hours. It is a Schedule II controlled substance in Florida. If you are facing this type of charge, you should consult an experienced Sarasota meth crime lawyer. At Hanlon Law, we are dedicated to advocating for people facing charges related to meth, marijuana, cocaine, LSD, morphine, and other serious drugs.Fighting a Meth Charge in Florida
In Florida, meth is a Schedule II controlled substance because of the high potential for abuse and serious risks of psychological or physical dependence. Abuse can lead to dependence. If you are caught possessing meth, you can be charged with a third-degree felony in Florida. That means that you may face a maximum of five years’ imprisonment or five years’ probation and a fine of up to $5,000. While you can be sentenced to probation, you could also face the very real possibility of prison time for five years.
If you are caught with at least 14 grams of meth, you can be charged with trafficking in meth. You should be aware that the 14 grams do not need to be pure meth; they simply need to be 14 grams of a mixture that includes meth. Even if there is a lot of filler in the mixture to increase profits, the mixture's total weight is what determines whether trafficking has occurred. Many people associate trafficking with professional drug dealers, but ordinary people do receive mandatory minimum sentences for trafficking because the convictions are based on the weight of the drug or drug-containing mixture, rather than on a greater connection to the criminal underworld. Thus, you should retain a meth crime attorney in the Sarasota area even if you have never been charged before and are not actually selling the drug.
If you are caught trafficking in 14-28 grams of meth, you can be charged with a first-degree felony. The mandatory minimum sentence is three years’ imprisonment and a fine of up to $50,000. If you are caught with 28-200 grams, you can also be charged with a first-degree felony. You may face a mandatory minimum sentence of seven years and a maximum fine of $100,000. If you are caught with 200 grams or more, it is a first-degree felony that comes with a 15-year prison sentence and a $250,000 fine.
Ingredients used to manufacture meth include anhydrous ammonia, lye, iodine, red phosphorus, ephedrine, and hydrochloric acid. If you are caught manufacturing or importing into the state 400 grams or more of meth or phenylacetone, phenylacetic acid, pseudoephedrine, or ephedrine, along with other equipment and chemicals used to manufacture meth, knowing that the likely consequence of the manufacture or importation would be someone’s death, this is a capital felony.
There are procedural and substantive defenses to meth charges that a Sarasota meth crime attorney may be able to raise, and you should not assume that a conviction is certain simply because you are being investigated or charged. The earlier that we get involved in your case, the more likely it is that we will be able to help you. One common defense is based on the Fourth Amendment. Police must have probable cause to believe that a meth lab is being operated in order to obtain a search warrant to search the premises and look for ingredients. Sometimes, they do not have probable cause but search unlawfully anyway. In that case, it may be possible to file a motion to suppress the evidence that was seized during the search. Without that evidence, in most cases, the prosecutor will not be able to proceed with their case.Discuss Your Situation with a Knowledgeable Meth Crime Lawyer in Sarasota
Charges related to meth may result in serious consequences. Depending on the quantity and activity at issue, you may face imprisonment and a fine. Even if you get probation, you may have a stigma that follows you into the workplace and housing market, and you may be ineligible for certain kinds of educational financial aid and licenses. Sarasota criminal defense attorney Will Hanlon is dedicated to protecting the rights of the accused. He has represented people charged with serious drug offenses involving meth, cocaine, marijuana, oxycodone, and other substances since 1994 and is familiar with all potential criminal defense strategies. Call Hanlon Law at 941.462.1789 or contact us through our online form.