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West Palm Beach Criminal Lawyer / Blog / Drug Crimes / Drug Trafficking vs “Intent To Sell”

Drug Trafficking vs “Intent To Sell”


Because of the state’s past history with illegal drugs, crimes involving sale or trafficking are taken incredibly seriously. That said, it is important to draw a distinction between the two. Florida law differentiates between the offenses, particularly in the matter of intent – but being charged with either can be a life changing event. Enlisting the right attorney to protect your rights is crucial.

Possession With Intent To Sell

Possession with intent to sell is a fairly self-explanatory offense. A person is illegally in possession of a substance, which they intend to sell or otherwise distribute to others. To establish possession under Florida law, a prosecutor must establish that the person had dominion and control over the substance, or over the place where the substance was located, and that they knew of both its presence and its illegality. Both selling and distributing such substances (for money or at no charge) are prohibited.

Charges for possession with intent to sell can range from a first-degree misdemeanor to a first-degree felony, as much depends on the quantity of the drug involved, the type of substance, and any extenuating circumstances surrounding the offense. For example, if a person is found to be distributing drugs within 1,500 feet of a school, the charge will be more serious than if they were selling drugs in the middle of an open field. Nonetheless, even the lightest possession charge can lead to a year in jail, plus hefty fines and court costs.

Drug Trafficking

Drug trafficking is defined in Florida as the sale or distribution of large amounts of controlled substances. The major difference between drug trafficking and possession with intent to sell in Florida is that for the latter, state’s attorneys must establish that you had intent to sell or distribute drugs. With a trafficking charge, the mere possession of large amounts of drugs is considered evidence of intent, and does not need to be proven by the prosecution.

If you have been charged with trafficking, it is absolutely crucial to take the charges seriously. Trafficking is one of the offenses which still triggers a mandatory minimum sentence in Florida, and the minimum sentence for such an offense is usually stricter than one for possession with intent to sell. Because so many Floridians have been harmed by drug usage and abuse, the state pursues traffickers doggedly, and the likelihood of conviction is high.

Contact A West Palm Beach Drug Crimes Attorney

Being charged with either possession with intent to sell or drug trafficking is an extremely serious matter, and it is important to have the right legal help on your side. A West Palm Beach drug crimes attorney from the firm of Perlet & Shiner, P.A. can help ensure that you get your day in court. Call our office today at (561) 721-0552 to speak to an attorney.



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