Our Tampa criminal defense lawyers handle marijuana charges on the state and federal level. If you have been arrested for a marijuana crime, including possession, selling, or trafficking, contact our experienced drug crime attorneys today to schedule your free consultation at our Tampa office.
Penalties for Marijuana Crimes
The state of Florida does not treat marijuana crimes leniently and virtual any conviction has the possibility of probation and time in jail.
Possession of 20 grams or less of marijuana is a misdemeanor and punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of $1,000. Possession of marijuana in excess of 20 grams is a felony and can result in a $5,000 fine and incarceration for five years in state prison.
Giving a person (“delivering,” but not selling) 20 grams or less of marijuana is a misdemeanor and can result in a fine of $1,000 and up to one year in jail.
Sale, Trafficking, and Cultivation of Marijuana
If the amount of marijuana sold or grown is less than 25 pounds, the crime is a felony and punishable by a $5,000 fine and up to five years in state prison.
Selling, delivering, or growing 25 pounds or more of marijuana is a trafficking offense. Each offense involving 25 pounds or more carries a mandatory minimum sentence. If you are convicted of any of those crimes, the judge must sentence you to the mandatory minimum term in prison and may sentence you to even longer.
Trafficking between 25 and 2,000 pounds of marijuana, or more than 300 cannabis plants, carries a mandatory minimum sentence of three years and up to a $25,000 fine.
A conviction for trafficking between 2,000 and 10,000 pounds or plants is punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence of seven years in state prison and a fine of $50,000.
Trafficking in excess of 10,000 pounds or plants will result in a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in prison and a fine of $200,000.
Proximity to Designated Locations
Trafficking marijuana within 1,000 feet of certain locations, like schools, parks, daycare centers, and churches, can result in a sentence of up to 15 years in state prison and a $10,000 fine.
If you are convicted of possessing drug paraphernalia, you can be sentenced to up to one year in jail and a fine of $1,000. For instance, a bong, pipe, or scales may be considered drug paraphernalia within the meaning of the law, but the court will consider a lot of factors to make that determination. If there is marijuana residue on a bong, for instance, the court is likely to determine that the bong is a piece of drug paraphernalia.
Driver’s License Revocation
If you are convicted of possession, trafficking, or the sale of marijuana, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will suspend your driver’s license for two years. You may be eligible for a hardship license at an earlier date, but never less than six months after the convicted. If you are convicted of another drug crime while your driver’s license is suspended, the DHSMV will add another two years to the suspension.
Other Marijuana Crimes Penalties in Florida
A marijuana-related conviction has far-reaching implications for your life. If you want to work for the government in Florida, you will have to enroll in drug treatment. You will be unable to adopt or foster a child for the five years following your conviction. You may not be allowed to reside in public housing for up to three years. If your conviction was a felony, it will be a crime for you to possess a firearm for the rest of your life.
At this point in time, the state of Florida does not recognize the legal use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. Even in within the growing number of states that have decriminalized possession of small amounts of marijuana for medical purposes, it remains a federal crime under the Controlled Substances Act. Marijuana has been touted as beneficial for a variety of ills, including controlling the nausea of cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. If you have been arrested for possession of marijuana, contact our Tampa marijuana defense attorneys.
Marijuana and Your Education
A conviction for possessing or selling marijuana can have a tremendous impact on your goals. You may become ineligible for federal student financial aid, like Pell Grants and Stafford Loans, if you have a drug conviction on your record. The conviction could be under federal or state law and, under some circumstances, will permanently bar you from receiving financial aid. Even if you later become eligible again for financial aid or you are able to pay your own way through school, many schools do not accept students who have a criminal record.
Call us for Strong Representation
If you are facing charges for the possession, trafficking, or sale of marijuana or any other controlled substance, contact the experienced Tampa marijuana defense lawyers at Tampa Defense Law. Our attorneys have over 100 years of combined experience in criminal defense.
Call us or fill out our online contact form today to schedule your free, confidential initial consultation.