Federal Drug Defense Lawyer in Naples
Joffe Law, P.A. can fight for your freedom in Collier County, Florida
Naples, Florida, is inside South Florida’s High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area after the Office of National Drug Control Policy added Collier County to the region. This designation provides additional federal resources to drug crime investigators. Federal money pays for investigators’ overtime and finances drug buys. As a result, people in this region have a heightened chance of being identified as a suspect in a federal criminal case. Ideally, an individual who believes that he or she has attracted the attention of law enforcement will contact a Naples federal drug crimes attorney for advice. Legal support from Joffe Law, P.A. could potentially deflect an arrest. If an arrest does go forward, the advocacy of an attorney intimately familiar with the federal criminal courts could prepare someone to wage a strong defense when threatened by a long prison sentence, fines or asset forfeitures.
Types of drug charges we handle
Drug crimes result from the possession, manufacture, or sale of controlled substances, like cocaine, marijuana, heroin, methamphetamine and prescription medications. Possession of a controlled substance alone would rarely attract federal prosecution. Such offenses are largely left to the state courts. However, other drug offenses can qualify for federal criminal charges under a variety of circumstances.
Also known as drug distribution, this offense involves possessing, importing or transporting controlled substances with the intention of selling them. Drugs in the possession of a suspect are not for personal use alone but instead meant to serve the drug market. An individual may face a trafficking charge for participating in any function related to the distribution. Although the state manages most drug trafficking cases, federal criminal charges are possible when large quantities are involved, drugs are imported from out of state or out of the country or federal agents make the arrest.
Prescription drug fraud
This drug offense involves manufactured pharmaceuticals intended for legitimate medical applications. However, many prescription painkillers, stimulants and steroids circulate in the black market, and addicts often break the law to obtain them. Forging prescriptions, doctor shopping, filling other people’s prescriptions and using fake documents to obtain prescription drugs are all forms of fraud. Federal authorities usually take an interest in these offenses when they are committed by large crime organizations or the activities crossed state lines.
Do not say anything that might incriminate you. Speak with an attorney first.
Defendants risk serious penalties
The U.S. government has made the “War on Drugs” a priority for decades. Sentencing guidelines are harsh, even for first offenses. To some extent, the sentences have been designed to encourage defendants hoping for a lenient plea deal to provide investigators with information about drug traffickers farther up the hierarchy of the organization.
Different sentences are recommended according to the type and quantity of controlled substance involved and whether other crimes were committed concurrently.
Some examples of mandatory minimum federal drug sentences are:
- 500 grams of cocaine require a prison term of 5 to 40 years.
- 5 kilograms of cocaine require a prison term of 10 years to life.
- 5 grams of pure methamphetamine require a prison term of 5 years to 40 years.
A person identified as a “drug kingpin” could face a longer prison sentence of 20 years to life for the first offense. Someone at the helm of a very large drug trafficking network that is grossing $10 million or more annually may possibly go to prison for life.
Sentences like this are entirely possible after conviction. In October 2019, a North Fort Myers woman was convicted by a jury for conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and distribution. The conspiracy charge has the potential to send her to prison for 40 years, and the two distribution charges call for up to 20 years for each count. Her case went to federal court because she was part of an organization that allegedly sold $10,000 in cocaine, heroin or fentanyl every day.
Like all crimes, drug crimes require a prosecutor to have evidence that fulfills the definition of the crime specified within criminal statutes. Each requirement potentially creates an opportunity to challenge the conclusions made by a prosecutor or point out the absence of credible evidence.
A defense attorney may question the validity of charges prior to a trial or during the negotiation of a plea bargain. This effort may make a prosecutor feel uncertain about the outcome and motivate the government to drop a case or reduce charges.
Prior to an arrest, legal advice could aid a person who has been contacted by a criminal investigator. An attorney familiar with the tactics used by law enforcement to encourage people to self-incriminate can prepare someone for an interview.
Retain an experienced federal criminal lawyer
Because South Florida receives heavy law enforcement scrutiny concerning drug crimes, almost any individual, landlord or business owner may come under the scope of an investigation. People who learn about their rights as soon as possible have a greater chance of avoiding prosecution or limiting its effects. Law enforcement agents tend to presume that anyone is guilty, but we stand up for our clients’ Constitutional rights, which were designed to protect citizens from excessive intrusions by the state. The attorneys at Joffe Law, P.A. have defended many clients in federal criminal courts. Our knowledge of the system will result in a highly coordinated defense of your liberty.