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Drug Charges

In the 1980’s the United States declared a War on Drugs to combat those possessing, selling or manufacturing controlled substances. Since these laws were implemented thousands of people have been incarcerated for various drug crimes throughout the nation. In the last five years the United States has been on the road to decriminalizing a lot of these drug crimes.

However, this process hasn’t been very timely so many people around the U.S. must face serious penalties from drug crimes every day. Depending on the circumstances a person could face expensive fines in the thousands and be required to spend years behind bars. If you or someone you know has been charged with a drug crime, then it’s imperative you seek an experienced criminal defense attorney for assistance.

Drug Defense Attorneys in West Palm Beach, Florida

A drug charge and conviction can result in severe consequences that can be lifelong. If you’re convicted, then you could face expensive thousand-dollar fines and even spend time in jail or prison. Don’t be idle and gain legal representation that can help you today with Meltzer & Bell, P.A..

Meltzer & Bell, P.A. is a group of distinguished criminal defense attorneys in the Palm Beach County area who are passionate about what they do. We are available to our clients, 24/7, Monday through Sunday all week. You can call us at (561) 557-8686 and we will set up you first consultation free. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. accepts clients throughout the West Palm Beach area including Palm Beach, Wellington, Boca Raton and Jupiter.

Overview of Drug Defense in FL


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Types of Drug Crimes in Palm Beach County, Florida

Under the Florida Statutes, there are various types of drug crimes. Normally, the most common drug offenses are possession or possession with intent to sell. However, there are numerous other kinds of drug crimes that do include the following:


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Some Common Illegal Controlled Substances in Florida

When you hear the term “controlled substances” you may only think of unlawful drugs such as cocaine or cannabis. In reality, this isn’t the case. Controlled substances incorporate more than street drugs and can include prescription medications such as OxyContin and Ritalin. It can even include mixtures of some over the counter medicines such as mixtures of Tylenol or Robitussin.

The following are some different controlled substances that are illegal or illegal without a prescription under Florida law.

  • Street Drugs
    • Heroin
    • Opium
    • Cocaine
    • MDMA/XTC (Ecstasy)
    • PCP (Phencyclidine)
    • Psilocybin Mushrooms
    • Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD)
  • Marijuana / Cannabis / Weed / Pot
  • Prescription Drugs
    • OxyContin / Oxycodone
    • Vicodin / Hydrocodone
    • Xanax / Alprazolam
    • Ritalin / Adderall / Amphetamine
    • Valium / Diazepam
    • Demerol / Meperidine
    • Opioid / Fentanyl / Tramadol

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Drug Schedules in Florida

Drug crime penalties often rely on the circumstances and the schedule that the drug falls under. These classifications are based on the drug’s medical value and their abuse potential. Drug schedules can be found listed under the Controlled Substances Act in the U.S. Code.

  • Schedule I
    • These drugs have the highest risk of abuse and addiction. These drugs are not used in any type of medical setting in the US.
      • Examples are: Heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy), methaqualone, and peyote.
  • Schedule II
    • Drugs under schedule II can still lead to a chemical dependency. They are not considered to be as deadly as Schedule I drugs, but still have psychological and physical effects that could change a person’s life. Many schedule II drugs are used in a medicinal setting for both physical and mental disorders.
      • Examples are: Cocaine, fentanyl, hydromorphone, oxycodone, methamphetamine, Ritalin, Adderall, Dexedrine, methadone, and meperidine.
  • Schedule III
    • Drugs under schedule III have a moderate to low potential for physical and psychological dependence. Most of the time the ingredients are over the counter medications that are used daily by U.S. citizens.
      • Examples include: ketamine, Tylenol with codeine, testosterone, and anabolic steroids.
  • Schedule IV
    • Drugs under schedule IV have a much lower risk of addiction and have some medicinal purposes.
      • Examples are: Valium, Ativan, Xanax, Tramadol, Ambien, Talwin, Darvon, Darvocet, and Soma.
  • Schedule V
    • All drugs under schedule V have a low level of abuse so it’s very unlikely someone would get addicted from using them. Most of these drugs are used for antidiarrheal, analgesic and antitussive purposes.
      • Examples are: Lomotin, Robitussin, Motofen, Parepectolin, and Lyrica.

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Possible Defenses for Drug Crimes in Florida

Many law enforcement officers file drug charges after a search or a traffic stop. Even if the evidence of possessing drugs is apparent, you can still implement a strong defense to fight your charges. Having a skilled attorney to fight for you can give you the edge you need while they file motions, suppress evidence and poke holes in the prosecution’s case.

The right legal defense for your charges depends on your situation. There are a few common defenses utilized by attorneys in drug cases, which include, but are not limited to:

  • Illegal search and/or seizure;
  • Temporary possession
  • The drugs were planted;
  • Unknowing possession; and
  • Entrapment

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Drug Treatment Courts in Palm Beach County, Florida

The court may offer you a drug treatment program during plea bargaining to avoid incarceration.  These programs focus on rehabilitative treatment for drug offenders rather than punishment. If you’re accepted, then you’ll complete the program according to your court order. Successfully finishing the program in time will lead to your charges being dismissed. Failure to complete the conditions of the program will mean the court will reinstate the original statutory penalties you were facing.

The following is some important information regarding drug courts in Palm County Beach.

Drug Court
Gun Club Criminal Justice Complex
3228 Gun Club Road
West Palm Beach, Florida
(561) – 688 – 4530
​Program Coordinator: Nicholas Fricke

Family Drug Court
Palm Beach County Courthouse
205 North Dixie Highway
West Palm Beach, FL
561-355-6319
Program Coordinator: Lisa Bozzone


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Additional Resources

Drug Court in Palm Beach County – Visit the official website for the Palm Beach County Drug Court services to learn more about how their process works. Access the site to learn more about the eligibility requirements, what conditions you must complete and other relevant important information.

Drug Laws in Florida – Visit the official website for Florida’s legislation to learn more about drug crimes in Florida. Read more on the statutory language for drug crimes to see what legal options you may have. Find more information regarding drug crime penalties, possible defenses and information regarding drug treatment courts.


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West Palm Beach Lawyer for Drug Crimes in Florida

The penalties for a drug crime can feel overwhelming and cause you to be paralyzed on what to do next. If you or someone you know has been charged with a drug crime in Florida, then it’s important you seek an experienced criminal defense attorney to assist you. Do what’s best for your future by calling Meltzer & Bell, P.A. to see what possible legal avenues you can pursue.

Meltzer & Bell, P.A. isn’t just passionate about defense, but we have the experience needed to defend serious charges. Our lawyers have been practicing for nearly 20 years and understand what it takes to fight a drug charge. Call us at (561) 557-8686 to learn more during your free consultation. Meltzer & Bell, P.A. has clients throughout the greater Palm Beach County area including West Palm Beach, Palm Beach, Wellington and Boca Raton.


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  • Law Firm 500 Fastest Growing Law Firms In the U.S - 2017 Honoree
    Meltzer & Bell, P.A. was an honaree for the Fastest Growing Law Firm In the U.S. award in 2017.
  • National College for DUI Defense
    The NCDD is a professional, non-profit corporation dedicated to the improvement of the criminal defense bar, and to the dissemination of information to the public about drunk driving law and related issues.
  • Broward Association of Criminal Defense lawyers
    BACDL's mission is to assist, support, and strengthen the Broward County criminal defense practitioner in the zealous defense of individuals and their Constitutional rights.
  • Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
    Promoting excellence and integrity in the practice of criminal law.
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
    NACDL is an American criminal defense organization. Members include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, active U.S. military defense counsel, judges and more.
  • National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws
    NORML is an American non-profit organization based in Washington, DC whose aim is to achieve the legalization of non-medical marijuana in the United States.
  • DUI Defense Lawyers Association
    The DDLA was founded on principles of democracy, transparency, and freedom of speech. We provide support, resources and education to the top DUI attorneys nationwide.
  • Better Business Bureau
    The BBB, founded in 1912, is a private, nonprofit organization whose self-described mission is to focus on advancing marketplace trust.
  • Law Firm 500 Fastest Growing Law Firms In the U.S - 2017 Honoree
  • National College for DUI Defense
  • Broward Association of Criminal Defense lawyers
  • Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws
  • DUI Defense Lawyers Association
  • Better Business Bureau