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Of all the states in the U.S., Florida is probably the last one where you’d want to be charged with a drug crime. People convicted of drug crimes in Florida serve 2.3 years in prison on the average, up from about nine months in 1990. Florida’s unenlightened drug laws lag behind much of the nation, and the Florida legislature has repeatedly failed to even legalize marijuana for medical use, bucking a growing nationwide trend.

Will Hanlon is a Tampa drug crimes attorney that understands well the severity of drug charges. He has handled many drug related cases, dealing with marijuana, meth, prescription fraud, and much more. Attorney Hanlon can help you build a defense if you are facing drug charges.



The charges and penalties you’ll face in Florida when accused of a drug crime will depend on the type and amount of the drug and whether you have a prior record. Only possession of a small amount of marijuana is a misdemeanor in Florida. All other drug charges are felonies, which may be punished by as much as 30 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. These are just a few of the drug charges you may potentially be facing:



A criminal drug crime conviction will affect your future in more ways than the legal consequences you’ll face. In addition to the loss of freedom that comes with a prison sentence and money paid in fines, you will lose your rights to vote, own a gun, hold public office, and serve on a jury. You’ll also have to deal with the stigma of a criminal conviction following you throughout your life. It can negatively affect your ability to find a job or rent a house or apartment. You will lose your reputation and standing in the community, and you may not be eligible to receive financial aid to further your education.

If you are charged with a drug crime, you will need to hire a highly experienced Tampa drug crimes attorney with substantial experience in protecting the rights of the accused and helping them avoid the worst potential consequences. You have too much to lose to risk facing charges alone or with an overworked public defender.

Your attorney will:

  • Examine the police procedure that led to your arrest, to ensure your constitutional rights have not been violated
  • Determine if you meet the qualifications for a diversion program that will result in dismissal of charges
  • Pursue every possible avenue of defense
  • Negotiate a plea bargain to reduce the charges, if it is in your best interest
  • Defend you vigorously at trial, raising a “reasonable doubt” to achieve an acquittal



If you have been questioned or arrested and accused of a drug crime, you need the best help you can find. Attorney Will Hanlon has been successfully defending the rights of the accused in Tampa Bay and West Central Florida for more than two decades and has achieved outstanding results for his clients, in many cases helping them to avoid incarceration. Call him at the earliest hint that you are being investigated, because depending on the circumstances, he may even be able to avoid having charges files. In any event, the sooner Will is able to launch his investigation and begin to strategize your defense, the more opportunities will exist for dismissal or reduction of the charges. If the situation requires it, Will is a highly effective Tampa criminal defense lawyer who will present a persuasive case to a jury for your acquittal. But it is important that you call (813) 228-7095 now.




1).  What are the five schedules Florida divide drugs into?

  • Schedule I: These drugs have a high abuse potential and are not accepted for medical use or treatment. Examples of these drugs are heroin and LSD.
  • Schedule II: These drugs still have high abuse potential but are accepted for some limited medical use. Examples of such drugs are morphine and opium.
  • Schedule III: There is some abuse potential with these kinds of drugs but many of them are accepted for medical use such as anabolic steroids.
  • Schedule IV: Have a low abuse potential and also have a broad medical use. Diazepam is an example of such drugs.
  • Schedule V: This category includes marijuana and has a very low chance of making the user dependent to the drug. These drugs are used widespread for medical uses.


2).  What are the maximum jail sentences for possession of marijuana in Florida?

This all depends on the type of offense that was committed and if you have been found guilty:

  • First-Degree Misdemeanors are punishable up to 1 year in county jail.
  • Third-Degree Felonies are punishable by up to 5 years in a state prison.
  • Second-Degree Felonies are punishable up to 15 years in a state prison.
  • First-Degree Felonies are punishable by up to 30 years in state prison.
  • Punishable by Life carry maximum sentences of natural life in prison.


3).  Is it illegal to have old prescriptions?

If your prescription was initially prescribed to you and you still have a few holdovers, it is legal to possess them.


4).  Can I seal or expunge my drug crime charge?

Yes – if you have had no prior convictions and were acquitted of all your charges. If you meet the necessary requirements, you may be able to seal and expunge your case.


5).  What should I do if I am charged with a drug crime?

Remember that you have the right to remain silent when a police officer asks you a question. Do not say anything until you have an attorney present to help you navigate your charge. You will only hurt your case if you willingly give statements to police. If do not have a Tampa drug crime defense attorney, contact Will Hanlon immediately to help you navigate your case.