Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Possession with Intent to Distribute

The State of Florida views drug abuse as major contributor to criminal activity committed in the state. And as a result of this correlation, the penalties for the sale and distribution of controlled substances are harsh.

Pursuant to Fla Stat. 893.13(1)(a) is unlawful for a person to sell, manufacture, or deliver, a controlled substance.

To obtain a conviction for this offense, the State must prove the following three elements:

  • The defendant possessed a substance with intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver the substance
  • The defendant had knowledge of the substance
  • The substance was a controlled drug as defined by Fla. Stat. 893.03.

The law requires the State to prove Possession of a Controlled Substance in one of two ways:

  • Actual Possession
  • Constructive Possession

Actual possession occurs when the controlled substance is found on his or hers' person.

Constructive Possession requires the State to prove that the controlled substance’s presence is within the knowledge of a person and that the individual has dominion and control over the controlled substance.

Proving Possession with Intent

We often see defendants charged with “Possession with intent” when there is no actual intent by the defendant to actually sell the drugs. In most cases it is a strong-arm tactic by the prosecution to intimidate the defendant into accepting a plea bargain.

Fort Lauderdale Possession with Intent Attorney, Dave Simmons, understands these tactics utilized by the prosecution and will aggressively push to have the case dismissed or the charges reduced to a lesser offense.

The prosecution may use the following evidentiary factors in order to enhance the charge from a possession case to a possession with intent:

  • The Presence of paraphernalia including rolling papers, scales, testing kits.
  • Large sums of cash found in the vehicle or around area where the drugs are found.
  • The amount and type of the drugs found
  • The presence of weapons found in the vehicle or the property where the drugs are found.
  • A confession by the defendant or an associate.
  • The presence of packaging materials found near the drugs.

Some of the most commonly charged crimes in Florida involving possession of controlled substances with intent and the applicable penalties include the following:

  • Sale or Delivery of Cannabis: defined by Fla. Stat. 893.13(1)(a)(2) when (1) one sells, manufactures, or delivers cannabis; or (2) Possesses cannabis with the intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver cannabis; the Sale or Delivery of Cannabis is classified as a Third Degree Felony and is punishable by a maximum penalty of (5) years of Probation; up to a $5,000.00; and (5) years Florida State Prison.

    • Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 322.055 any person who is convicted of the Sale or Delivery of Cannabis shall have their Driver's License revoked for a period of (1) year by the Florida DHSMV.

Professional License Suspension

Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 893.11, any person convicted of the Sale or Delivery of Cannabis will be subject to the immediate suspension of any Professional License issued by State of Florida that authorizes the practice of a profession or trade.

  • Sale or Delivery of Cocaine: is defined by Fla. Stat. 893.13(1)(a)(1), (1) as the selling, manufacturing, or delivery of any amount of cocaine; (2) Possessing any amount of cocaine with the intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver cocaine. The Sale or Delivery of Cocaine is classified as a Second Degree Felony with the maximum penalty of 15 years in Florida State Prison; 15 years of Probation; and up to a $10,000.00 fine.

    • Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 322.055 any person who is convicted of the sale or Delivery of Cocaine shall have their Driver's License revoked for a period of (1) year by the Florida DHSMV.

  • Sale or Delivery of MDMA: is defined by Fla. Stat. 893.13(1)(a)(1), (1) as the selling, manufacturing, or delivery of any amount of MDMA; or (2) possessing any amount of MDMA with the intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver MDMA. The Sale or Delivery of MDMA is classified as a Second Degree Felony and is punishable by a maximum penalty of 15 years in Florida State Prison; 15 years of Probation; and up to a $10,000.00 fine.

    • Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 322.055 any person who is convicted of the sale or Delivery of MDMA shall have their Driver's License revoked for a period of (1) year by the Florida DHSMV.

Professional License Suspension

Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 893.11, any person convicted of the Sale or Delivery of MDMA will be subject to the immediate suspension any Professional License issued by State of Florida that authorizes the practice of a profession or trade.

  • Sale or Delivery of Heroin: is defined by Fla. Stat. 893.13(1)(a)(1), (1) as the selling, manufacturing, or delivery of any amount of heroin or (2) possessing any amount of Heroin with the intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver Heroin. The Sale or Delivery of Heroin is classified as a Second Degree Felony punishable by the maximum penalty of 15 years in Florida State Prison; 15 years of Probation; and up to a $10,000.00 fine.

    • Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 322.055 any person who is convicted of the sale or Delivery of Heroin shall have their Driver's License revoked for a period of (1) year by the Florida DHSMV.

Professional License Suspension

Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 893.11, any person convicted of the Sale or Delivery of Heroin will be subject to the immediate suspension any Professional License issued by State of Florida that authorizes the practice of a profession or trade.

  • Sale or Delivery of Methamphetamine: is defined by Fla. Stat. 893.13(1)(a)(1), (1) as selling, manufacturing, or delivery of any amount of Methamphetamine, or (2) Possessing any amount of Methamphetamine with the intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver Methamphetamine. The Sale or Delivery of Methamphetamine is classified as a Second Degree Felony with the maximum penalty of 15 years in Florida State Prison; 15 years of Probation; and up to a $10,000.00 fine.

    • Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 322.055 any person who is convicted of the sale or Delivery of Methamphetamine shall have their Driver's License revoked for a period of (1) year by the Florida DHSMV.

Professional License Suspension

Pursuant to Fla. Stat. 893.11, any person convicted of the Sale or Delivery of Methamphetamine will be subject to the immediate suspension of any Professional License issued by State of Florida that authorizes the practice of a profession or trade.

Defenses to Possession with Intent

These offenses are charged as either third or second degree felonies and the corresponding penalties are severe. It is imperative to contact a Fort Lauderdale Possession with Intent Lawyer to assert the best defenses available to contest these penalties. Many of same defenses are utilized here as are in the defense of straight possession cases including motions to suppress evidence, etc. (See Drug Possession Defenses)

An experienced Broward Defense Attorney can often leverage strong factual evidence and negotiate with the prosecution to amend the charge to a simple possession. If the state lacks the elements to prove possession, the entire case will be dismissed.

If you have been charged with Possession with Intent in Broward County, contact Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Attorney, Dave Simmons, at the Law Offices of Dave L. Simmons, P.A. at (954) 765-3540

Client Reviews
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"David is an outstanding lawyer. David was most caring on a personal level as well as working on my case. His understanding and honesty was genuine. I would advise you, to call David. He should be the first lawyer you call for your situation. I highly recommend him." Joey John
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If you're looking for an attorney who actually cares about your case...call Mr. Simmons. I've seen reviews before and some are quite contrived...mine is real. I was a client of his and I will attest to his character and professionalism under oath. Shawn Connors
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I highly recommend Dave Simmons to any individual who is in need of a criminal lawyer. He was on top of my case from the very beginning. He was easily accessible by phone and email (even on the weekends!!!) And most importantly he was successful in getting a great resolution to my case. Thank you for everything Dave! Marc Malloy