There are many reasons why Florida is a popular area. The warm weather, the proximity to the ocean and the local vegetation all make this state a popular place to travel to and even live. The fact that the state is a peninsula gives it access on three sides to open water. This factor alone has made the state known for a less positive reason, and that is for importing illegal substances. The close proximity to other nations has caused some drugs to impact the state. Take cocaine, for example. Since the 1980’s, Florida has faced an influx of cocaine importation, causing the sate to take a strong stance against it.
Thus, the penalties associated with cocaine possession are serious. If an individual is found in possession of more that 28 grams of cocaine, this is considered to be trafficking, resulting in a first-degree felony charge. However, for those found with just a small amount of the drug, it may be possible to qualify for a drug diversion program if they are a first-time offender.
With regards to trafficking charges, the penalties increase as the amount of the drug in question increases. For those allegedly in possession of 28 to 200 grams of cocaine, he or she could face 3 years imprisonment and a $50,000 fine. This increases to 7 years imprisonment and a $100,000 fine for 200 to 400 grams. Those in possession of 400 grams to 150 kilograms of cocaine could face 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. And for those in possession of more than 150 grams, he or she could face life imprisonment.
As noted above, the penalties associated with cocaine possession are harsh in the state of Florida. This makes it vital to fully understand the charges one is facing and how best to assert a criminal defense. Taking the time to strategize a criminal defense could ultimately help the accused reduced and even dismiss the charges he or she is facing.