Which Drug Charge Lawyer Is Best for You?
WHY YOU SHOULD CHOOSE TARACKS & ASSOCIATES
We understand you have several Tampa drug charge lawyers to choose from. However, there are crucial differences between them. There are several reasons why your best choice for a drug charge lawyer is Taracks & Associates. It’s important to have the best legal representation possible at your side. At Taracks & Associates, we have:
- A winning record: Barry Taracks has a proven record of wins. See our case results to learn about our wide range of successes.
- Extensive trial experience: Our drug crime lawyer has extensive trial experience in criminal matters, having served as lead attorney in hundreds of jury trials. He understands trial procedure from both sides of the courtroom and knows how to effectively and persuasively present a case before a judge and jury.
- We’ve helped over 10,000 people: That many cases mean we have basically seen it all, and our vast experience will work to your benefit.
- Former prosecutor experience: Our Tampa drug charge lawyer has experience as a former prosecutor, which gives him a unique perspective and understanding of how the prosecution approaches your case.
- Dual court licensing: Barry Taracks is licensed to practice in both state and federal court, giving us the ability to represent clients facing both state and federal drug offenses.
- Client-focused representation: We always keep your best interests, and the best interests of your family, in mind. We understand that not every matter goes to trial, but when they do, we are ready to go to court to fight for your rights.
- In the words of past clients: Don’t just take our word for it when we tell you about the quality of our legal representation in a drug charge case. See what our clients have to say.
Our drug charge lawyer in Tampa understands the complexity of drug crime cases and the potentially life-changing consequences they can have. With years of experience representing clients facing drug charges, our attorney has the knowledge and skillset necessary to navigate the legal system and provide effective legal representation. Whether you’re facing charges for possession, distribution, or trafficking, our team is committed to advocating for your best interests. We will ensure that your rights are protected throughout the legal process.
Trust Us to Manage Every Step of Your Case
WHAT OUR DRUG CRIME LAWYER WILL DO FOR YOU
There are additional reasons to have our team at your side when you’re facing a drug charge. Our level of detail and dedication as we work on your case can make all the difference. As a former Tampa prosecutor, Barry Taracks has the inside knowledge and experience to fight for your rights within the legal system.
Here’s what our team at Taracks & Associates can do for you when you’ve been charged with a drug crime in Tampa:
- Analyze every aspect of the evidence against you to uncover any flaws or illegal actions
- Challenge the prosecutor’s case aggressively, from start to finish
- Use our familiarity with police procedure to catch any mistakes or violations of your rights that may have occurred
- Protect your rights at every turn, including during police questioning
- Work tirelessly to achieve a favorable outcome for you, whether that means getting the charges dismissed, having the charges reduced, or securing an alternative sentence.
What Drug Crime Charge Will You Face?
HOW FLORIDA DEFINES DRUG CRIMES
The Florida drug charge statutes include various offenses related to controlled substances, such as possession, sale, delivery, trafficking, and manufacturing. Our Tampa drug charge attorney has experience handling every type of drug case in both state and federal courts. The primary laws governing drug offenses in Florida are in Chapter 893 of the Florida Statutes.
The statutes define the different drug schedules and the corresponding penalties for each offense, which range from misdemeanor charges to felony charges with mandatory minimum sentences. Some statutes also provide for enhanced penalties for drug offenses committed near schools, parks, or other designated areas. Even a minor marijuana charge in Tampa can cause serious difficulties for you if convicted. Your criminal record can affect your future employment and reputation. If you are arrested again in the future, you will be considered a “repeat offender” and may face more severe penalties.
EXAMPLES OF DRUG CHARGES
The various types of drug charges in Florida include the following:
- Possession: This charge occurs when someone has illegal drugs on their person, in their vehicle, or in their home. Possession can be either actual or constructive. Learn more about drug possession charges and the possession of marijuana.
- Trafficking: This charge involves the transportation, distribution, or sale of illegal drugs. It can also include importing or exporting drugs across state or international borders. Trafficking differs from the sale of drugs in the amount of drugs being sold. Trafficking is typically done on a large scale. In some trafficking cases, the federal government steps in because they have the authority to act in response to a violation of the Controlled Substances Act. Learn more about drug trafficking charges and about drug distribution and sales as well as possession with intent to distribute charges.
- Manufacturing: This charge involves the creation or production of illegal drugs. It can include growing marijuana, cooking methamphetamine, or producing other drugs. Learn more about drug cultivation and manufacturing charges.
- Conspiracy: This charge involves an agreement between two or more individuals to commit a drug-related crime. It can include planning to manufacture, distribute, or traffic drugs.
- Paraphernalia: This charge involves the possession, sale, or manufacture of drug paraphernalia such as pipes, syringes, or bongs.
- Prescription drug fraud: This charge involves the illegal acquisition or distribution of prescription drugs. This can include forging prescriptions, doctor shopping, or distributing prescription drugs for non-medical purposes. Read more about prescription drug crimes.
HOW FEDERAL DRUG CRIMES ARE DIFFERENT
It is important to note that federal drug crimes are different from state drug crimes. Federal drug crimes are criminal offenses related to the manufacture, distribution, possession, or use of illegal drugs that violate federal law. These crimes are prosecuted in federal courts and carry significant penalties, including lengthy prison sentences and hefty fines.
Drug crimes can result in sentences that will forever change your life. Give yourself the best chance to have the charges dismissed or reduced by calling 813-990-0599. Contact our team at Taracks & Associates to be sure you get representation from our drug charge attorney as soon as possible.
Manufacturing and Trafficking of Drugs
YOU FACE SERIOUS PRISON TIME AND NEED A SKILLED DRUG CHARGE DEFENSE LAWYER IN TAMPA ON YOUR SIDE
Drug manufacturing and trafficking are prosecuted much more harshly than possession. The legislature has established mandatory minimums for these drug crimes, which means that prison time is always on the table. As with possession charges, your criminal record has much to do with your sentence.
However, because of the mandatory minimums and the seriousness of drug crimes, first-timers can expect to do some considerable time if convicted. Additionally, possession charges turn into trafficking charges when you possess a certain amount of a drug. For example, if you have more than 28 grams of cocaine on you, there’s an automatic assumption of trafficking, which is punished severely.
MARIJUANA CULTIVATION AND TRAFFICKING
Manufacturing marijuana is called cultivation. Florida, which has a progressive medical marijuana system in place, still harshly punishes recreational and unlicensed possession, cultivation, distribution, and use of marijuana.
If you’re convicted of the cultivation of marijuana, you’ll likely be facing a third-degree felony that could land you in prison. Additionally, if you’re caught with a certain amount of marijuana, you’ll be charged with possession with intent to distribute.
The penalties are as follows:
- 25 to 2,000 pounds requires a 3-year mandatory sentence and a $50,000 fine.
- 2,000 to 9,999 pounds requires a 7-year mandatory sentence and a $50,000 fine.
- 10,000+ pounds requires a 15-year mandatory sentence and a $200,000 fine.
Remember, mandatory minimums require judges to impose a minimum sentence. No matter what the circumstances, the court’s hands are tied, and they must obey the sentencing statute.
Cocaine has a long history in Florida and continues to be a concern for the health and well-being of the population at large. As such, the legislature has established severe punishments for trafficking and manufacturing activity related to the drug.
The punishments for drug charges related to trafficking in cocaine are as follows:
- 28 to 199 grams results in a 3-year mandatory minimum sentence and a $50,000 fine.
- 200 to 399 grams means a 7-year mandatory minimum sentence and a $100,000 fine.
- 400g to 150kg nets a 15-year mandatory minimum sentence and a $250,000 fine.
- More than 150kg means life without parole and a $250,000 fine.
The same penalties apply to crack and any other cocaine analogs.
Heroin has long plagued the U.S. and has destroyed many lives. Recently, it has experienced a resurgence thanks to its low price compared to prescription opioids. Heroin possession is a felony at low levels, and trafficking is severely penalized.
A trafficking conviction could result in these penalties:
- 4 to 13 grams results in a 3-year mandatory minimum sentence and a $50,000 fine.
- 14 to 27 grams equals a 15-year mandatory minimum sentence and a $100,000 fine.
- 28g to 29 kgs results in a 25-year mandatory minimum sentence and a $250,000 fine.
- More than 30kg means life without parole and a $500,000 fine.
As with cocaine, law enforcement takes heroin trafficking seriously and prosecutes it with zeal. You need a skilled Tampa drug crime lawyer to successfully defend you against the state’s attempts at imprisoning and fining you.
METHAMPHETAMINE MANUFACTURE AND TRAFFICKING
Methamphetamine drug cases are common and often prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Trafficking and manufacturing the drug comes with heavy penalties for those convicted of these charges. Penalties include the following:
- 14 to 27 grams equals a 3-year minimum sentence and a $50,000 fine.
- 28 to 199 grams equals a 7-year minimum sentence and a $100,000 fine.
- 200 to 399 grams means a 15-year mandatory minimum sentence and a $250,000 fine.
- 400 grams or more is life without parole and a $250,000 fine.
Other controlled substances will net similar penalties if manufactured or trafficked, including MDMA (ecstasy or molly) and PCP.
At Taracks & Associates, you get the peace of mind that comes with knowing that a seasoned drug charge defense lawyer in Tampa is handling your case. Our clients benefit from the years of experience our firm has representing drug charge cases and beating them. Call today for a free, discreet consultation with our Tampa drug charge lawyer at (813) 990-0599.
Penalties for Drug Crimes
WHAT YOU MAY FACE IF YOU’RE CHARGED WITH A DRUG CRIME IN TAMPA
When you learn about the potential penalties for drug charges in Tampa, you’ll understand why it’s essential to have a highly skilled and experienced drug crime lawyer at your side. Many drug crimes in Florida, including drug trafficking crimes, are felonies that have steep fines and long sentences. Felonies carry other negative impacts on your future, as well. Drug crimes can be classified as either misdemeanors or felonies, with misdemeanors being less severe and felonies carrying heavier penalties.
However, other factors — such as evidence, representation, circumstances surrounding the charges, and the judge’s disposition — can also play a role. While being acquitted of charges is the best outcome, if that is not possible, it is crucial to work to minimize the sentence since drug trafficking charges carry serious consequences.
It’s important to note that these penalties are not set in stone and may vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case. It’s always best to consult with our drug crime attorney if you or someone you know is facing drug charges in Florida. Our central goal is to get your drug charges dropped, dismissed, or reduced.
EXAMPLES OF PUNISHMENTS FOR DRUG CRIMES
Here are some examples of drug crimes and the possible punishment you could receive if you’re convicted. Misdemeanors are the lowest charge, and first-degree felony drug charges carry the harshest punishment.
A first-degree misdemeanor can result in up to one year in jail and fines of up to $1,000. Examples of first-degree misdemeanors include drug possession of under 20 grams of marijuana and drug paraphernalia charges.
If an individual is charged with drug possession and the substance exceeds a certain weight, they may face a third-degree felony. Common examples of drugs resulting in a third-degree felony include cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine, heroin, and Xanax without a prescription. Third-degree felonies are considered the least severe type of felony in Florida and can result in fines of up to $5,000 or prison sentences of up to 5 years.
Possession with intent to sell and possession of certain chemicals used to make illegal substances, such as cocaine or ecstasy, are typically considered second-degree felonies in Florida. The penalties for second-degree felonies can include up to $10,000 in fines and a sentence of up to 15 years in prison.
First-degree felonies are the most serious drug charges in Florida and carry the heaviest penalties. Possessing more than 10 grams of a Schedule 1 or Schedule II drug, selling drugs within 1,000 feet of schools or parks, and drug trafficking are all considered first-degree felonies. The penalties for this category of felony can include up to a $10,000 fine and up to 30 years in prison.
In addition to these penalties, a felony conviction can also result in the loss of certain civil rights, such as the right to vote or own a firearm. It is important to note that sentencing is ultimately up to the judge and can vary depending on the specifics of the case.
A First Offense Can Receive Reduced Sentencing
First-time offenders may be eligible for alternative sentencing options such as probation, drug treatment programs, or diversion programs that can allow them to avoid a criminal record. However, repeat offenders or those with a history of violent crimes may face harsher penalties, including mandatory minimum sentences.
Any drug offense can result in a punishment that could forever change your life. Your actions immediately after the arrest are crucial. Be sure you call our Tampa drug charge lawyer as soon as possible. If your loved one faces drug charges, we will explain in a free initial consultation how we can help them.
Consequences of a Drug Crime Conviction
IMPACTS ON YOUR FUTURE ARE MORE THAN FINES AND JAIL TIME
It’s crucial to recognize that the potential consequences of a drug offense conviction extend far beyond the sentence that a court can impose. There are serious collateral consequences that could follow you long after your court-imposed penalty has been served. That’s why it’s imperative to enlist the services of our Tampa defense attorney for any drug charge, no matter how minor.
One of the most significant collateral consequences of a drug conviction is its impact on employment. Many employers conduct background checks on potential employees, and a criminal record, particularly one involving drugs, could severely limit job opportunities. Additionally, even if you already have a job, Florida’s at-will employment state allows employers to terminate employees for any legal reason, including a drug conviction.
YOUR DRIVER’S LICENSE
Drug offenses can lead to the suspension or revocation of a driver’s license in Florida, as outlined in statute 322.055. Even if you are just accused of simple possession of drugs, your driver’s license can still be revoked. Depending on the county, the court may require you to complete a drug treatment program to avoid losing your license, and they may allow you to drive for work if you are not serving a jail sentence. It is important to contact a criminal defense attorney in Tampa as soon as possible after the citation or arrest to avoid losing your driving privileges.
For students, a drug conviction could lead to academic sanctions such as probation, financial aid withdrawal, suspension, or even expulsion. Many colleges and universities have codes of conduct that prohibit students from engaging in any illegal activity, including drug use or possession. Moreover, schools often run background checks on applicants, and a drug conviction could bar you from getting admission into your preferred institution.
Prospective landlords also conduct background checks and scrutinize applicants’ criminal histories, and a drug conviction could make it challenging to rent an apartment. Landlords have a financial stake in keeping their properties drug-free and may deny tenancy to an applicant with a history of drug offenses.
Finally, a drug crime conviction is a matter of public record, which means that anyone can access your criminal history with ease. This can cause significant damage to your reputation within your community and impact your personal and business relationships.
How Our Tampa Drug Charge Lawyer Will Defend You
DEPEND ON OUR DETAILED KNOWLEDGE OF THE LAW AND EXPERIENCED TACTICS
Being arrested for a drug crime does not necessarily mean that you will be convicted. In fact, with the help of our skilled Tampa drug charge attorney, there are several ways you may be able to protect your future. For instance, if law enforcement officers violated your constitutional rights during the search and seizure of the drugs, it could result in the exclusion of evidence they collected.
Several types of legal defenses can be used in drug crime cases, ranging from challenging the legality of a search and seizure to proving entrapment by law enforcement officials. Here are a few examples:
- Unlawful Search and Seizure: The Fourth Amendment guarantees the right to due process of law, including lawful search and seizure procedures before the arrest of a suspect by a law enforcement officer. Police can seize drugs in plain view, but they are not allowed to open other compartments of a car without reasonable suspicion or a search warrant.
- Enticement and Entrapment by Law Enforcement Officers: Drug enforcement officials often use raids or sting operations to catch drug offenders. However, they are prohibited from enticing or persuading citizens to commit crimes — doing so is considered entrapment. For example, if a police informant pressures someone to pass drugs to a third party, it can be considered entrapment.
- Constructive Possession Defense: When multiple people are present at a traffic stop where drugs are found, or when drugs are discovered in a public place with several individuals present, the constructive possession defense can be used. This defense argues that someone cannot be held responsible for something illegal that is discovered in an area to which other people will have had reasonable and free access.
- Motion to Dismiss Confidential Informant and Motion to Suppress Evidence: This drug charge motion to dismiss defense can be used in cases when a confidential informant is not a credible witness or provided false information to lessen their own sentence. A motion to suppress evidence can be used when drug charges arise from a search of your property or vehicle without a warrant. Doing so violates your Fourth Amendment rights.
- Addiction Mitigation: If we tried other defenses that were unsuccessful, we can pivot to another drug charge defense: addiction mitigation. This approach may reduce your sentence. The goal is for the defendant to enter a drug rehabilitation program rather than be sentenced to jail time. Florida’s Drug Court is a voluntary program in which adults must undergo treatment for their drug addiction problem. The treatment includes drug testing, counseling, support meetings, and regular meetings with your probation officer.
Time Is Running Out
WHY YOU NEED TO CALL OUR DRUG CHARGE LAWYER NOW
If you or someone you know is facing drug charges, it can be an overwhelming and daunting experience. Drug charges are serious offenses that can result in significant fines, jail time, and a permanent criminal record. Let us fight to secure the outcome that you deserve because you are innocent until proven guilty. It is our mission to get your drug charges dropped, dismissed, or reduced to protect you and your future.
The right attorney can make all the difference. Rely on our extensive experience, our record of winning, our detailed knowledge of the law, and our tactical skills. When you work with our drug crime lawyer in Tampa, he will fight tirelessly to protect your constitutional rights throughout every step of the criminal justice process. We know that the stakes are high, and we’re committed to doing everything in our power to help you.
Time is running out. Call 813-990-0599 to speak with our experienced drug charge lawyer today. Let us start building your defense before it’s too late.