Possession with Intent to Sell

In some drug cases, it is common for law enforcement to file criminal charges for possession with intent to sell. Usually this originates from a large quantity of an illegal drug being seized from the alleged offender. If the amount exceeds what law enforcement considers being personal use, you may face drug dealing allegations.

Law enforcement are much more likely to diligently pursue conviction for drug offenders who sell. A possession with intent to sell charge has harsh penalties including expensive fees and possible incarceration. Any person, who has been charged for possession with intent to sell, should seek a defense attorney.

St. Lucie County Attorneys for Possession with Intent to Sell, FL

A drug offense on your record can be life altering. Even those who have had clean records can face heavy fines and possible jail time. This is not the time to be idle. You must secure trusted legal representation to protect your future.

Contact the experienced criminal defense attorneys at Meltzer & Bell. Our team is composed of a former prosecutor and former public defender. We have the insight of both sides. Additionally, our attorneys have over 20 years of collected experience. Get an attorney that fits you today with Meltzer & Bell.

The attorneys at Meltzer & Bell represent those accused of drug offenses throughout the greater Martin County and St. Lucie County area including Rio, Fort Pierce, Port St. Lucie, and Stuart.

Explore your legal options. Contact us today at (772) 291-2534, or simply submit an online contact form for a free consultation.

Overview for Possession with Intent to Sell


Definitions for Possession with Intent to Sell in Florida

For a person to be convicted for possession with intent to sell, the prosecution must prove the following elements:

  • The alleged offender possessed a certain substance with the intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver the substance;
  • The substance was a controlled substance under Florida law; and
  • The alleged offender had knowledge of what the substance was.

The first element the prosecution must prove is possession. The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the alleged offender had constructive or actual possession of the substance. If the prosecution fails at establishing possession, then the charges may be reduced or dismissed.

The term actual possession is when a person is in actual, physical control of the substance. For instance, the substance was in the person’s hand, purse, or within their “ready reach.”

On the other hand, constructive possession is a little more complex to prove. A person is constructive possession if he or she has total control and dominion over the substance. It does not need to be in their vicinity, but does belong to the alleged offender such as if the drugs are in the alleged offender’s vehicle.


Drug Schedules under Florida Law

The Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act classifies controlled substances into five schedules. These schedules divides the drugs based on their potential for abuse and if they can be used medically.

Drug schedules under Florida law includes:

  • Schedule I – Controlled substances under schedule I have the highest potential for abuse, and have no accepted medical purpose. Examples of schedule I drugs include lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), heroin, and cannabis.
  • Schedule II – Drugs under schedule II still have a high potential for addiction, but can be used medically in some circumstances. Examples of schedule II drugs include cocaine, opium, codeine, and hydrocodone.
  • Schedule III – Substances in this schedule have a moderate to low potential for chemical dependency. They can also be used for medical applications. Examples of schedule II drugs include anabolic steroids and Tylenol with codeine.
  • Schedule IV – The controlled substances under schedule IV have a lower likelihood of abuse or dependency. In addition, many of these drugs are used for medical purposes. Examples for schedule IV drugs include valium and Xanax.
  • Schedule V – All drugs under this schedule have the lowest potential for abuse and are commonly used for medical reasons in the U.S. Some examples of schedule V drugs include Lyrica, Robitussin, and Motofen.

Factors and Penalties Possession with Intent to Sell in Florida

Legal consequences for possession with intent to sell are much more harsh than simple possession. Often, there is no actual evidence of any intent to sell in these cases. Instead, law enforcement may charge possession with intent to sell due to the amount of the drug seized. In many cases it ups the charge and intimidates the accused.

Some factors that can indicate intent to sell or deliver a controlled substance include:

  • The type of drugs found
  • Drugs found in bulk amounts
  • The presence of surplus currency
  • The presence of a firearm or other deadly weapon
  • The presence of drug paraphernalia including baggies and scales
  • Statements by the alleged offender that he or she had the intent to sell drugs

Penalties for possession with intent to sell vary based on the type and drug amounts found. Conviction can result in severe penalties including steep fines and possible incarceration. Additionally, the conviction can result in additional fines, community service, probation, and a driver’s license suspension.


Additional Resources

Jury Instructions for Drug Offenses – Visit the official website for Florida’s Supreme Court and read the Standard Jury Instructions for criminal cases. Find the information that a grand jury will review in your case. Read more regarding penalties, exceptions, and admissible defenses in court.

Drug Courts – Visit the official website for the Florida Courts. Find more information regarding drug courts in the state of Florida. Read more on the requirements, programs, and benefits that drug courts can do for your case.


Lawyer for Drug Dealing in St. Lucie County, FL

Have you been accused of drug dealing in the Treasure Coast area? Are you currently being investigated for possession with intent to sell? If so, it is vital that you gain legal representation immediately.

Our attorneys at Meltzer & Bell are experienced in Florida’s criminal courts. We have over 20 years of collective knowledge from handling drug offenses in Florida. Additionally, we treat each client with compassion and care. We will update you every step of the way, and explore all legal options with you.

Meltzer & Bell practices law throughout the 19th Judicial Circuit of Florida including Fort Pierce, Stuart, Fort Pierce, and Jupiter Island.

Dial today at (772) 291-2534, or simply submit an online contact form for a free consultation for your case today.


This article was last updated on September 5, 2018.

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