Drug crimes in Florida are extremely serious. Prosecutors work hard to get harshest penalties for anyone found guilty of possessing, trafficking, or manufacturing controlled substances. 

Having a controlled substance on your person amounts to possession. If you’re found to be illegally marketing, transporting, or importing drugs, the drug trafficking charges would be more serious. 

If you’ve been arrested and you face such charges, get in touch with your Ocala drug crimes lawyer right away and seek their expertise on what to do next. They’ll put together a defense strategy for you depending on the type of drugs you had on your person and their quantity.

Understanding How Drug Schedules Work

Drugs are classified into five categories or “schedules” in the United States. The Controlled Substance Act outlines which drugs are illegal to produce, possess, market, or distribute. The specific schedule for each drug is decided based on the substance’s safety, medical uses, and possibility of misuse or addiction. 

While possessing and selling many kinds of drugs can lead to punishment, you could incur stiffer penalties depending when dealing with Schedule I and Schedule II substances.

Schedule I

Schedule I drugs include heroin, marijuana, ecstasy, and LSD. The federal government has declared that these drugs are the most dangerous because of their high potential for misuse. These substances have no confirmed medical use and are addictive both physically and psychologically. They cannot be legally obtained by the general public.

Schedule II

Schedule II drugs include methamphetamine, cocaine, fentanyl, and oxycodone. Although these drugs do have some medicinal usage, they are also highly addictive with a high potential for misuse. Users can get psychologically and physically dependent on them. These substances are only acceptable to possess with specific permission such as a doctor’s prescription.

Schedule III

Schedule III drugs include Vicodin, Tylenol, anabolic steroids, codeine, and ketamine. These substances do have some medical and physical uses but they also have a moderate to low potential for psychological and physical dependence. 

Schedule IV

Schedule IV drugs include Ativan, Xanax, Valium, Soma, and Ambien. These medicines are typically prescribed for insomnia, anxiety, and sleep disorders. Users can develop some dependence on them. 

Schedule V

Schedule V drugs include Lyrica, Robitussin, and Parepetocin. Typically available over the counter, these medicines are antitussive, antidiarrheal, and analgesic drugs with a low potential for abuse and developing dependence.

criminal defense attorney in heathrow prisoner | smith & eulo

Possible Federal and State Penalties for Drug Crimes

Penalties for drug crimes depend on the type of drug offense and the quantity of the drug found on you. Possession offenses involving small amounts are considered misdemeanors in general, and you would pay a fine and receive a jail term. 

Trafficking drugs is a more serious offense, a first-degree felony. You face anywhere from 5 years to a maximum of 40 years in prison. Here’s what to expect. 

Minimum Quantity for a Sentence of 10 Years to Life Imprisonment 

  • Heroin – 1 kg 
  • Cocaine – 5 kg 
  • Marijuana – 1,000 kg 
  • Mix of substances containing cocaine  – 280 g 
  • Phencyclidine (PCP) – 100 g 
  • Mix of substances with a large percentage of PCP – 1 kg
  • Mix of substances with a large percentage of LSD – 10 g
  • Mix of substances with N-phenyl-N-[1-(2-phenylmethyl)-4-piperidinyl] propenamide – 400 g
  • Methamphetamine, including its isomers, salts, and salts of its isomers – 50 g
  • Mix of substances containing a large percentage of methamphetamine, its isomers, salts, or salts of its isomers – 500 g

Sentence of 5 Years to 40 Years Imprisonment

  • Heroin – 100 g
  • Cocaine – 500 g
  • Marijuana – 100 kg
  • LSD or Lysergic Acid Diethylamide – 1 g
  • Mix of substances with PCP – 100 g
  • Mix of substances with cocaine – 28 g
  • Methamphetamine – 5 g
  • Phencyclidine (PCP) – 10 g

Drug Laws in Ocala Can Be Complex and Hard to Understand

Considering that drug crimes in Ocala, Florida can be complex, it is critical that you get competent representation if you’re ever involved in a drug case. The attorneys at Smith & Eulo have been working in this arena for 20 years and have detailed insights into drug laws and the possible penalties. Rely on the experienced lawyers to create a hard-hitting defense and make sure that your rights have been protected. Being accused of drug crimes in Florida is a serious situation and you’ll need the best people to fight your case.