There are many different drugs that people in Florida use each day. Many of these drugs are prescribed and, therefore, are perfectly legal for people to use. However, there are many other types of drugs that are always illegal. People arrested for possessing or distributing these illegal drugs can face serious drug charges. However, the severity of the consequences depends on a number of different factors.
One of these factors is the type of drug the person possesses. Drugs are categorized into five different schedules with Schedule I being the most serious. Drugs categorized as Schedule I have a high likelihood of abuse and no medical use. Schedule II includes drugs that also have a high likelihood for abuse but do have some highly restricted medical uses. Schedule III is drugs with a lesser likelihood for abuse that also have some medically accepted uses. Schedule IV drugs have a low likelihood of abuse compared to the other schedules and have some medically accepted uses. Schedule V drugs have the lowest likelihood for abuse than all other schedules and have some medically accepted uses.
The potential consequences for possessing and distributing the drugs are highest for the drugs in Schedule I and lowest for Schedule V. Other factors that determine the potential consequences include the amount of the drug the person possesses and whether they have had prior offenses. However, people only realize these consequences if they are convicted of the crime. Being charged does not automatically mean a person is guilty and there may be defenses available.
Many people in Florida are charged with various drug offenses. The penalties vary greatly if people are convicted. There are many factors that go into determining both the punishments and potential defenses. These are very fact-specific cases and experienced attorneys may be a useful resource.