The criminal justice system is complicated, and the proceedings are often unpredictable. Although the state of Florida has mandatory sentences for convictions related to drug crimes, various aggravating factors can affect the consequences of a conviction.

Possible penalties for a drug conviction include prison, probation, fines and court costs, court-ordered treatment, home detention, and the loss of other freedoms. Being convicted of a drug crime can affect your relationships and job prospects, so if you are facing charges, it is critical that you take immediate action.

Michael D. Weinstein, PA will evaluate your situation and develop a comprehensive defense based on the unique facts of your case. As your criminal defense attorney, Mr. Weinstein will make himself available seven days a week. Call 1-877-639-4404 to schedule a free consultation with a drug lawyer in Fort Lauderdale.

What Aggravating Factors Can Affect the Severity of Drug Charges?

The circumstances of your arrest will ultimately determine the severity of the charges that you are facing. For example, drug possession can be a misdemeanor or a felony. Factors that affect your charges—and potential penalties—include:

  • The type of drug involved;
  • The amount of the substance found in your possession;
  • The purpose of your possession—for example, personal use versus intent to sell; and
  • Various aggravating factors.

Aggravating factors are just one element that affects criminal proceedings, but in some cases, they mean the difference between misdemeanor and felony charges. In simplest terms, aggravating factors are factors that increase the severity of a crime and thus warrant harsher penalties in the eyes of the law.

When it comes to drug possession charges, possible aggravating factors include any prior convictions and the location where police found you in possession. For example, if you were near a school or at a school bus stop, you could be facing felony charges for a possession crime that would have otherwise been a misdemeanor.

Other aggravating factors include possession on public transportation and possession in or near certain public buildings. Being in the presence of a minor can also affect the charges.

The penalties for drug felony charges in Florida are severe, and having a conviction on your record could prevent you from getting gainful employment or establishing residence in certain communities once you complete your sentencing.

If you are facing drug charges for possession and the circumstances of your arrest include aggravating factors, you should take the necessary steps to protect your freedom and your future. You can start by discussing your situation with Michael D. Weinstein, PA.

Depending on the facts of your case, it may be possible to fight for reduced charges, a reduced sentence, or a dismissal of your case altogether. Call 1-877-639-4404 to schedule a free consultation with a criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale. You can learn more about criminal proceedings in Florida by visiting the USAttorneys website.