Drug Paraphernalia Crimes - Florida Statute 893.147

drug crimes

Are you being charged, in Palm Beach County, Florida with Possession of Drug Paraphernalia? Need a drug paraphernalia defense attorney in West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Jupiter, Palm Beach Gardens or Boynton Beach? We are drug paraphernalia defense attorneys located in West Palm Beach. When you are arrested for illegal drugs, it is important to hire a Criminal lawyer that understands and practices in the area of drug crimes and criminal defense law. Don’t hire a lawyer that dabbles in criminal defense; hire a criminal defense lawyer that has extensive experience in defending drug paraphernalia charges. Your drug crime or drug offense lawyer needs to have knowledge and experience in drug cases but also needs to know the prosecutors, judges and court staff. Knowing the players comes from years of being inside the courtroom. Finding the best criminal defense attorney in Palm Beach County, for your case, is difficult. You need to review their educational background, experience in criminal cases, their reputation in the community, and their ability to communicate with you, the client. The quality of the criminal defense attorney you hire to defend your drug paraphernalia case is extremely important. We ask that you consider our South Florida Drug Paraphernalia Defense Lawyers. Attorney Roger P. Foley has offices in Broward County, Fort Lauderdale, and in West Palm Beach. Mr. Foley has defended hundreds of individuals charged with drug crimes; Possession of drugs, possession of drug paraphernalia, Sell, deliver, manufacturing of drugs, cultivation of drugs, marijuana grow house charges, and drug paraphernalia charges.

Palm Beach Gardens drug paraphernalia defense lawyers, Royal Palm Beach drug paraphernalia defense attorneys, Delray drug paraphernalia defense attorneys are available now to defend your case. We have defended individuals charged with drug paraphernalia crimes in Lake Worth, Riviera Beach, North Palm Beach, Wellington and Juno Beach.

In Florida, not only is it illegal to buy, sell, or possesses illegal drugs, it is also illegal buy, sell, or possess drug related items. Florida Statute 893.147 makes it illegal to possess, use, manufacture, sell, or transport drug paraphernalia. What is drug paraphernalia?

Drug paraphernalia is something used in relation to illegal drugs to:

  • Analyze,
  • Compound,
  • Conceal,
  • Contain,
  • Convert,
  • Cultivate,
  • Grow,
  • Harvest,
  • Ingest,
  • Inhale,
  • Inject,
  • Manufacture,
  • Pack,
  • Plant,
  • Prepare,
  • Process,
  • Produce,
  • Propagate,
  • Repack,
  • Store, or
  • Test.

As you can see, this is a very broad list. There are many things which are legal that can be used to do many of these tasks. How does one determine a legal pipe from an illegal pipe? Florida Statute 893.146 gives us some relevant factors to determine if the object is drug paraphernalia or not. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Statements by an owner or by anyone in control of the object concerning its use.
  • The proximity of the object, in time and space, to a direct violation of this act.
  • The proximity of the object to controlled substances.
  • The existence of any residue of controlled substances on the object.

Here are some examples of drug related paraphernalia from Florida Statute 893.145:

  • Bongs,
  • Hypodermic needles,
  • Pipes,
  • Balloons,
  • Scales, or
  • Spoons.

This statute has multiple crimes but we are going to focus on three of the more popular crimes.

Florida Statute 893.147(1) – Possession of Drug Paraphernalia

It is illegal to possess with intent to use drug paraphernalia.

What the State Prosecutor Has to Prove to Convict a Defendant

The state prosecutor has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt:

(1) The defendant used or had in his or her possession with intent to use the drug paraphernalia; and

(2) The defendant had knowledge of the presence of the drug paraphernalia.

Defenses

“[T]he defendant must have knowledge of the illicit nature of the substance allegedly possessed.” Chicone v. State, 684 So. 2d 736, 746-47 (Fla. 1996). If the defendant did not know what it was, then the defendant cannot be convicted for this crime.

The defendant is also going to have to possess the paraphernalia. Possession can be proven two ways: (1) actual and (2) constructive. Actual possession is where the defendant would have the items in his hand or pocket. Constructive is harder for the prosecutor to prove. Constructive possession can be shown by the paraphernalia being in a place where the defendant had control of or he concealed it. If the paraphernalia is not in a place where the defendant had control, the prosecutor can show that the defendant had control of the paraphernalia in the particular place and he had knowledge that the paraphernalia was in his presence. For example, it will be hard for a prosecutor to show that a defendant possessed drug paraphernalia in a house when there are other people living there and the paraphernalia is in the open after a party.

Punishment

This crime is a first-degree misdemeanor which is punishable up to 365 days in jail and a $1,000 fine. If you are placed on probation, you will typically have to submit to random drug testing or enroll in a drug treatment program.

Florida Statute 893.147(2) - Delivery, Possession with Intent to Deliver, or Manufacture with Intent to Deliver Drug Paraphernalia

It is illegal to deliver, possess with intent to deliver, or manufacture with intent to deliver drug paraphernalia.

What the State Prosecutor Has to Prove to Convict a Defendant

The state prosecutor has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt:

(1) The defendant either:

  1. Delivered drug paraphernalia;
  2. Possessed with intent to deliver drug paraphernalia; or
  3. Manufactured with intent to deliver drug paraphernalia.

(2) The defendant had knowledge of the presence of the drug paraphernalia; and

(3) The defendant knew or reasonably should have known that the drug paraphernalia would be used to plant, propagate, cultivate, grow, harvest, manufacture, compound, convert, produce, process, prepare, test, analyze, pack, repack, store, contain, conceal, inject, ingest, inhale or otherwise introduce into the human body.

Defense

One defense is that the items that were delivered were not intended to be used as drug paraphernalia and it was not know that it would be used as such. For example, duct-tape and pvc pipes could be used as drug paraphernalia. An innocent person could be caught delivering some random items to a drug user.

Punishment

This crime is ranked as a level 2 crime under the Florida Criminal Punishment Code. This crime is a third-degree felony which is punishable up to 5 years in prison and a $5,000 fine. If you are placed on probation, you will typically have to submit to random drug testing or enroll in a drug treatment program.

Florida Statute 893.147(4) – Delivering Paraphernalia to a MinorWhat the State Prosecutor Has to Prove to Convict a Defendant

The state prosecutor has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt:

(1) The defendant delivered drug paraphernalia to person;

(2) The defendant knew or reasonably should have known that the drug paraphernalia would be used to plant, propagate, cultivate, grow, harvest, manufacture, compound, convert, produce, process, prepare, test, analyze, pack, repack, store, contain, conceal, inject, ingest, inhale or otherwise introduce into the human body; and

(3) When the delivery was made, the defendant was 18 years old or over and other person was under 18 years old.

Punishment

This crime is a third-degree felony which is punishable up to 5 years in prison and a $5,000 fine. If you are placed on probation, you will typically have to submit to random drug testing or enroll in a drug treatment program.

Overall Defenses

Most drug paraphernalia cases can be defended. Paraphernalia is generally found because of a stop, arrest, or warrant. Our Delray Beach Drug Paraphernalia Attorneys can sometimes get cases dismissed by challenging the stop, arrest, or warrant based upon it violating the Fourth Amendment. Our Delray Beach Drug Paraphernalia Attorneys will also try to argue a motion to dismiss by saying that the prosecutor does not have enough evidence to convict you. Either way, we have options at resolving the case before trial.

Contact The Law Office of Roger P. Foley, P.A.

If you have been arrested and charged with this crime, call our law offices today to schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers. It is important we speak to you so we can hear your version of the case. From the information you give us, we will put together a defense strategy so we can defend your case. We can look at diversion programs, or file motions to get rid of your case or even take your case all the way to trial.

If the case cannot be won, which is sometimes the situation, then our Delray Beach Drug Paraphernalia Attorneys won’t give up, we will try to get you the best outcome possible by preparing a mitigation package to persuade the prosecutor and judge to lessen your sentence or charges.

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