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DeSantis Signs Off on New Drug Laws

October 03, 2023

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Controlled Substances that Often Result in Death and Murder Charges
Miami criminal lawyers will have their hands full for a while dealing with all the changes in the laws recently signed off on by Governor DeSantis. Three major changes were made to the drug laws currently existing in the State of Florida. For years, Florida has taken all drug-related conduct seriously. The state has established severe penalties including minimum-mandatory sentences. Believe it or not, individuals who distribute certain enumerated drugs that result in death are subject to first-degree murder charges if the State can prove that a defendant provided someone with certain controlled substances resulting in the death of an individual. These laws are often referred to as drug-induced homicide or death by unlawful distribution laws. DeSantis added methamphetamines to a list that already included cocaine, fentanyl, and a few others.

Another new law includes enhanced penalties for selling controlled substances within 1,000 feet of a substance abuse facility. The law creates enhanced penalties by increasing the penalty to a first-degree felony for anyone who sells or distributes controlled substances within 1,000 feet of a drug treatment clinic, recovery residence, or any facility that provides treatment to individuals recovering from addiction. Florida already has laws in place prohibiting the sale of drugs from 1,000 feet of schools and daycare centers. Miami criminal lawyers have been dealing with the latter category for years. They are sometimes difficult to resolve as they carry three-year minimum-mandatory sentences.

The third new law dealing with controlled substances is an amendment to the current statute dealing with trafficking in fentanyl. Fentanyl is on the radar for Miami-Dade prosecutors and others across the state. The drug is receiving state-wide and national attention due to the increased number of deaths taking place after its ingestion. The new law increases the minimum- mandatory sentence for trafficking in fentanyl to the highest in Florida. The minimum mandatory sentences for this offense are 7 years for 4-14 grams, 20 for 14-28 grams, and 25 years for more than 28 grams. Keep in mind that Florida's trafficking laws do not require distribution. Minimum-mandatory sentences will apply to those who simply possess these amounts of fentanyl.

Jury Gavel and Drugs as Florida Introduces New Drug Laws
Florida's drug laws are some of the strictest you will find around the country. In fact, some of minimum mandatory sentences are far harsher than those found in the federal sentencing guidelines. Only experienced counsel familiar with the laws are able to negotiate the criminal justice system when dealing with trafficking and other drug-related offenses. If you need representation in a drug possession, drug sale, or drug trafficking case, give Donet, McMillan and Trontz, PA a call at (305) 444-0030. We have many years of experience dealing in drug related criminal charges and will obtain the best result possible.
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