Have you been arrested for a Drug Crime in Palm Beach County, Florida?
Although Florida state law contains prohibitions on the growing, distribution and use of cocaine, recreational marijuana and other drugs and controlled substances, federal authorities prosecute most drug offenses. This is due to the fact that federal drug crimes typically carry mandatory minimum sentences, which the state counterparts often do not. However, state and federal courts in Florida are not mirror images of each other, as the rules of evidence, other procedures and even the judges differ to a great degree between state and federal court, which makes it vital that you hire a criminal defense attorney like West Palm Beach attorney Bryan Raymond who is familiar with and has defended those accused of federal drug crimes in the past. Contact experienced West Palm Beach criminal defense attorney Bryan Raymond if you have been charged of a drug trafficking, distribution, or possession in federal court in Palm Beach County.
Federal Laws Pertaining to the Possession of Illegal Drugs
Federal law is unique from Florida state law in that many federal drug possession and distribution criminal offenses typically carry with them mandatory minimum penalties that specify a stated period of jail time from which a judge often will not deviate no matter how compelling a defendant’s story may be or how unjust the punishment might seem. Therefore, if agents from the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) burst into your home pursuant to a search warrant and discovers that you are in possession of 156 marijuana plants, the number of plants becomes a bargaining chip for federal prosecutors in a subsequent criminal proceeding. For instance, an Assistant United States Attorney may offer to charge you with the offense of possession of 99 marijuana plants if you plead guilty to such a possession charge, even though DEA agents actually found 146 plants in your home. The punishment for a first offense of possession with intent to distribute more than 100 marijuana plants is a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 years in prison. Therefore, if you plead guilty to the lesser offense of possession with intent to distribute 99 plants, this enables the prosecutor to obtain a guilty plea without having to take the risk of losing at trial if the DEA agents were found to have conducted an illegal search and seizure of the plants or some other procedural error may have taken place. You as the criminal defendant would benefit because you would not be facing a mandatory minimum of 5 years in prison by pleading to possession of the lesser amount of plants. This is a scenario quite unlike any found in state court.
Why A Defense Attorney’s Experience in Federal Court Matters in Connection with Federal Drug Crimes
Many criminal defense attorneys who regularly represent defendants in state court proceedings are not as well versed in the procedures involved in a federal court proceeding. The rules and sentences for drug offenses like possession or distribution of a controlled substance can be quite different in federal court than in Florida state court. This can include everything from the sentencing procedures to the evidentiary rules. In addition, certain federal judges may be more likely to rule for a defendant on a motion to suppress key evidence, which is something that a criminal defense attorney inexperienced in federal court may not realize. Therefore, it is of vital importance to ensure that whatever attorney you select to defend you in connection with your possession, distribution or other drug offense is experienced in representing defendants in federal court. Nothing is a substitute for experience with the different rules, procedures, and offenses in state court vs. federal court.
Contact Attorney Bryan Raymond if You Have Been Arrested for a Federal Drug Crime in Palm Beach County
Bryan Raymond is experienced in representing criminal defendants in federal drug crimes, including possession, distribution, and trafficking in controlled substance offenses. He knows the ins and outs of the federal rules of evidence and criminal procedure and uses that knowledge to provide his clients with skilled, aggressive representation. If you have been accused of a drug crime such in federal court in Palm Beach County, contact experienced West Palm Beach criminal defense attorney Bryan Raymond today.