Marijuana Laws, Legalization of Marijuana and Marijuana Criminal Charges
The summit meeting of Western Hemisphere foreign ministers on legalizing marijuana took place last week and the ending revealed how rocky that path would be — and how many nations remained reluctant to join it.
The frustration with current drug policy — with its high costs, death tolls in the tens of thousands across the Americas and persistent heavy flow of narcotics — is very real. Consensus on what to do about it, however, is much harder to come by. Diplomats here even tussled behind the scenes on how to follow up on the report and how further talks should be conducted.
The focus on the crack in the door for legalization has obscured the fact that several countries in the thick of the problem, and not just the United States, are cool to the idea or reject it outright as any solution to the violence or as a way to control consumption.
The United States, despite the states that have legalized marijuana for medical or recreational purposes, has not budged on its position. Yet some Latin American leaders have said the move by those states undercuts the federal government’s argument for seizing and criminalizing the drug.
Speaking here Wednesday on his first Latin America trip as chief diplomat, Secretary of State John Kerry said he was open to dialogue but defended American policy. He called it comprehensive, balanced between reducing demand, which he said had decreased by 40 percent in recent years, and increasing treatment, yet not letting up on seizing drug loads and making arrests.
He suggested that those pushing legalization were seeking a panacea. “These challenges simply defy any simple, one-shot, Band-Aid” approach, Mr. Kerry told the assembly. “Drug abuse destroys lives, tears at communities of all of our countries.”
The United States was among the countries that agreed to keep up the dialogue but behind the scenes scoffed at another foreign-minister-level discussion on drugs, which is now planned for April of next year to provide further guidance on new strategies. The given reasons were the cost of another such meeting while the O.A.S. budget was under scrutiny and worries that politics intruded on such high-level discussions. Source
Florida Marijuana Laws
Florida has fairly strict marijuana laws; possession and sales can both lead to jail time, loss of license and other consequences. If you’ve been arrested in Florida for marijuna-related crime, it is important to contact a criminal defense attorney immediately who specializes in marijuana laws.
Possession of marijuana in Florida carries a potential jail sentence regardless of whether the possession is for personal use or sale. Possession of up to 2o grams of marijuana is a misdemeanor charge.
Most other possession charges lead to felony convictions if the amount of pot in possession is more than 20 grams.
Cultivating more than 25 plants is considered intention to sell in Florida, which is a felony.
Paraphernalia possession or sale is a misdemeanor rather than a felony. There are no other laws in Florida regarding paraphernalia.
Misdemeanor marijuna possession in Florida subjects a defendant to up to 1 year in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Delivering less tahn 20 grams to another person carries the same penalties.
Possession of any larger amounts of marijuana for personal use comes with a $5,000 fine and 5-year prison term.
Marijuana Cultivation Penalties
It is illegal to cultivate marijuana plants; having more than 25 plants is considered possession with intention to sell, which comes with a 15 year jail sentence and $10,000 fine.
Delivering more than 20 grams but less than 25 pounds of marijuana is considered selling, which can result in a 5-year jail sentence and fine of $5,000. Sale and delivery of more than 25 pounds of marijuana is considered drug trafficking in Florida.
Trafficking comes with mandatory minimum sentences, which vary depending on the amount of marijuana being distributed. Trafficking less than 2,000 pounds requires you to serve 3 years in jail and pay a fine of $25,000. For trafficking between 2,000 and 10,000 pounds of marijuana, you must pay a $50,000 fine and go to jail for seven years. For trafficking any amounts greater than 10,000 pounds, you must go to prison for 15 years and pay a $200,000 fine. If any of this occurs within 1,000 feet of a school, public park, public housing facility, daycare center or church, you must pay a $10,000 fine and serve 15 years in prison.
Florida DUI Marijuana Laws
Drugged driving, or driving under the influence of marijuana, is also illegal in Florida. Unlike many states, Florida allows police to compel drivers to take a drug test. If a driver refuses to do so, he or she can be sent to jail for one year. The police may also use force to take a blood test if they suspect intoxication at the scene of an accident.
For a first drugged driving offense, the driver must pay a fine of between $500 to $1,000. He or she must also spend up to six months in jail and lose his or her license for six months to a year. The driver’s vehicle will be impounded for 10 days and he or she must complete 30 hours of community service.
After a second offense, the person must undergo a psychosocial evaluation to determine the reason for the drug use, lose his or her license for 180 days to a year, install an interlock device, lose his or her vehicle for 10 days and pay a fine of $1,000 to $2,000.
Marijuana Charges Defense Attorney
The law office of Andrew D. Stine, P.A., is committed to representing those charged with growing marijuana and other drug crimes. We have extensive experience representing clients with drug charges and know what it takes to form an effective defense. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with an experienced criminal defense lawyer.
Free consultation 24/7: Call West Palm Beach criminal defense lawyer Andrew D. Stine, P.A. at (561) 832-1170. Se habla español.