trafficking in cannabisThe criminal defense lawyers at Arnesen Law represent clients charged with a multitude of drug-related offenses, ranging from marijuana/cannabis trafficking and sale of prescription drugs, to possession of drug paraphernalia. These skilled legal practitioners appear regularly in courts throughout South Florida in towns including West Palm Beach, Wellington, and Jupiter, focusing specifically on clients charged with criminal and DUI offenses.

Having participated in the investigation and prosecution of countless drug cases during his work as a former police officer, founding partner Jay Arnesen is uniquely qualified to evaluate cases involving alleged drug offenses. In fact, his extensive credentials include certification through The John Jay University School of Criminal Justice’s High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Advanced Training Narcotics Course. This highly regarded program certification is achieved by law enforcement officials serving a variety of distinguished agencies, including the FBI, DEA, ATF, and US Customs Enforcement Bureau.

With the professionalism, compassion, and expertise to address drug charges from both sides of the law, the attorneys at The Arnesen Law Firm are available anytime at 561-419-9630 to provide free legal consultations.

As a former police officer, I used to help prosecute these charges for the State. Now, let me use my training and experience to combat these charges for you in court.” Jay Arnesen, Esq., Criminal Defense Attorney

Trafficking in Marijuana/Cannabis – Florida Statutes Section 893.135 

Drug Trafficking is considered an extremely serious crime in Florida. In fact, these offenses entail a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment, the terms of which are contingent upon the amount of the substance involved in the alleged offense. The Florida Criminal Code includes a lengthy list of drug trafficking charges, which are contained in Chapter 893, Section 135. Specifically, 893.135 details the penalties associated with marijuana (or cannabis) trafficking charges in subsection (a) of this section. Trafficking in marijuana/cannabis offenses differ slightly from the others included in this list, as the penalties associated with these crimes are determined by either the weight of the drug itself or the actual number of plants allegedly transported.

Section 893.135(a) mandates the following:

(1)    Any person who knowingly sells, purchases, manufactures, delivers, or brings into this state, or who is knowingly in actual or constructive possession of, in excess of 25 pounds of cannabis, or 300 or more cannabis plants, commits a felony of the first degree, which felony shall be known as “trafficking in cannabis,” punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084. If the quantity of cannabis involved:

1.   Is in excess of 25 pounds, but less than 2,000 pounds, or is 300 or more cannabis plants, but not more than 2,000 cannabis plants, such person shall be sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 3 years, and the defendant shall be ordered to pay a fine of $25,000.
2.   Is 2,000 pounds or more, but less than 10,000 pounds, or is 2,000 or more cannabis plants, but not more than 10,000 cannabis plants, such person shall be sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 7 years, and the defendant shall be ordered to pay a fine of $50,000.
3.   Is 10,000 pounds or more, or is 10,000 or more cannabis plants, such person shall be sentenced to a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 15 calendar years and pay a fine of $200,000.

*For the purpose of this paragraph, a plant, including, but not limited to, a seedling or cutting, is a “cannabis plant” if it has some readily observable evidence of root formation, such as root hairs. To determine if a piece or part of a cannabis plant severed from the cannabis plant is itself a cannabis plant, the severed piece or part must have some readily observable evidence of root formation, such as root hairs. Callous tissue is not readily observable evidence of root formation. The viability and sex of a plant and the fact that the plant may or may not be a dead harvested plant are not relevant in determining if the plant is a “cannabis plant” or in the charging of an offense under this paragraph. Upon conviction, the court shall impose the longest term of imprisonment provided for in this paragraph.

Trafficking in Marijuana/Cannabis – Potential Penalties

Although all criminal charges for trafficking in marijuana/cannabis are classified as first degree felonies in Florida, the sentencing guidelines associated with these offenses vary based on the weight or number of plants involved, as stated previously. Not only are these crimes punishable by a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment, they also entail massive fines that can reach values in the hundreds of thousands. In addition, a defendant convicted of violating the above statute will be subject to a mandatory 2-year driver’s license suspension, as well as the the forfeiture of his or her business or professional license for a period of suspension.

Amounts Ranging from 25 to 1,999 Pounds; or 300 to 1,999 Plants: mandatory minimum 3-year term of incarceration, maximum term of 30 years in prison, and a $25,000 fine

Amounts Ranging from 2,000 to 10,000 Pounds; or 2,000 to 10,000 Plants: mandatory minimum 7-year term of incarceration, maximum term of 30 years in prison, and a $50,000 fine

Amounts Above 10,000 Pounds; or 10,000 or More Plants: mandatory minimum 15-year term of incarceration, maximum term of 30 years in prison, and a $200,000 fine

Contact Our Palm Beach County Marijuana/Cannabis Trafficking Defense Lawyers for a Free Consultation

Florida vigorously prosecutes defendants charged with drug trafficking and even requires the imposition of a mandatory minimum prison term for those convicted. Clearly, cases of this kind must be combatted with a fervent, comprehensive defense in order to achieve a positive outcome. The lawyers at Arnesen Law challenge the State in cases like these throughout South Florida. Contact their offices today at 561-419-9630 to find the help you need to beat these charges. Legal consultations are always provided free of charge at this reputable firm.


Tell Us About Your Case

Jay Arnesen is a retired police officer turned criminal defense attorney who now defends clients charged with criminal and traffic (DUI) offenses in South Florida. With offices conveniently located in Fort Lauderdale and Boca Raton, Mr. Arnesen appears in courts throughout South Florida on a regular basis. Protect your rights, contact experienced criminal defense lawyer Jay Arnesen anytime for a free initial consultation at 866-347-6296.

Arnesen Law, P.A.

Areas We Serve

Palm Beach County, Atlantis, Belle Glade, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Briny Breezes, Cloud Lake, Delray Beach. Glen Ridge, Greenacres, Gulf Stream, Haverhill, Highland Beach, Juno Beach, Jupiter, Lake Park, Lake Worth, Manalapan, North Palm Beach, Ocean Ridge, Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, Palm Springs, Riviera Beach, Royal Palm Beach, Wellington, West Palm Beach


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1825 NW Corporate Blvd. Suite 110

Boca Raton, FL 33431

  (201) 556-1570  

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633 South Andrews Avenue

Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

  (866) 317-5164