Definition of Possession of Cocaine
Under Section 893.13(6)(a), Florida Statutes, Defendants who are in actual or constructive possession of cocaine will be charged with a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison for unlawful possession of Cocaine. Florida Statute 893.03(2)(a)4 states that cocaine is a Schedule 2 controlled substance. Prosecutors need to prove that the defendant possessed cocaine and had actual or constructive knowledge of the presence of cocaine. They must prove these elements beyond a reasonable doubt. At Moses & Rooth, we know how to dismantle the prosecution’s case to fight for a dismissal or a not guilty verdict.
Penalties for Possession of Cocaine in Florida
Possession of cocaine is a third degree felony in Florida. A conviction for possession of cocaine face the following penalties:
- Up to five years of probation
- Up to five years in prison
- A driver’s license suspension, and
- A fine of up to $5,000
Defendants found in possession of 28 or more grams of cocaine will face charges for drug trafficking which is a first-degree felony. The amount of cocaine that the defendant allegedly possessed will determine the severity of the punishment.
What is Cocaine?
Cocaine is a white crystalline powder that is typically snorted or injected to create an intense euphoric “rush”. Its derived from coca leaves but by the time it gets to the end user, it’s a flaky white powder or a white rock which is referred to as crack cocaine.
How is “Possession” Defined Under Florida Law
Possession is having, holding or exercising power or control over an item. They say that “possession” is nine-tenths of the law. In this case, they are correct. Police do not need to prove that you are the owner of the cocaine found on your person, in your home, or in your vehicle. They need to prove that you knew that the cocaine was there. While this is not necessarily simple, saying that the cocaine “is not yours” will not be an adequate defense under Florida law. You will need to prove that you did not know about it. We often deal with three different types of possession – Actual Possession, Constructive possession and Joint possession.
- Actual possession – cocaine is in your hand, in your pocket or so close to you that you have control over it.
- Constructive possession – the cocaine is in place that you have control over or attempted to hide. To prove constructive possession, the government must show that you had control over the cocaine and that you knew the cocaine was there.
- Joint Possession – this is where two or more people have control over the cocaine. Each person who is in control can be considered in possession of the same cocaine.
Potential Defenses for Possession of Cocaine in Florida
At Moses & Rooth, we will evaluate your case and help you determine the best legal defense for your case. Some of the more popular defenses to a charge of cocaine possession include the following:
- Prosecutors have a lack of evidence to support the possession of cocaine charge
- Law enforcement did not properly weight the cocaine in question
- Mere proximity to the Methamphetamine does not establish possession
- Temporary possession
- Knowledge is required. In actual possession the knowledge is presumed however in constructive cases the knowledge of the Methamphetamine is not presumed.
- Fourth amendment violation due to unlawful search and seizure – this could be an unlawful search of your vehicle or an unlawful search of your pockets.
How Can an Attorney Help You Fight Your Cocaine Possession Charges?
If you are facing a cocaine possession charge, you need to seek help from an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. At Moses & Rooth, we have decades of experience fighting hard for our clients throughout the criminal justice process. We will thoroughly investigate your case and find evidence that will help you prove that you are not guilty.
Contact Our Experienced Cocaine Possession Defense Lawyers
If you are facing a cocaine possession charge in Orlando, our legal team can help fight for your rights. Contact Moses & Rooth Attorneys at Law today to schedule your free consultation for your legal team. When you are facing possible prison time, you need skilled and aggressive legal Orlando criminal defense lawyers.
Possession of Cocaine Resources
Florida Statute §893.13(6)(a) – Possession of controlled substance statute
Florida Statute 893.03(2)(a)4 – Cocaine is a Schedule II controlled substance
Florida Statute 322.055 – driver’s license suspension for drug conviction
Florida Statute 893.21 – overdose possession
Florida Statute 777.201 – Entrapment Statute
Florida Statute 893.11 – Profession License Suspension Statute
Florida Jury Instructions 25.7 – Possession of Controlled Substance
Cocaine Street Terms:
Blow, coke, Big C, Crank, Line, Rail, Snow, Powder, Stash, Bump, Pearl, Flake, Snow White, Sleigh Ride, White Mosquito
Crack Cocaine Street Terms:
Candy, Base, Rocks, Nuggets, Dice, Tornado, Snow coke, Gravel, Grit, Jelly Beans, Scrabble