Because of its proximity to so many coastlines, it’s no secret that Florida has become a major hub for drug traffickers. This means that all kinds of narcotics make their way through Florida and up to the rest of the country. As a result, Florida marijuana laws impose their harshest sentences on possession or growing of big amounts of pot.
Beyond the importation of marijuana, there is still a lot of homegrown product. By some estimates there is over a quarter ton of marijuana grown in Florida every year. If allowed to go onto the streets that amount of pot can generate over one billion dollars in profit for the drug dealers. Even though Florida law enforcement agencies want to go after the big players, there isn’t a lot of slack cut for the smaller users.
With regard to medical marijuana, Florida doesn’t have any such laws enacted nor does there seem to be any push for these types of initiatives.
Florida Marijuana Penalties
The cut off for possession of marijuana in Florida is 20 grams. Having less than 20 grams of pot is classified as a misdemeanor. If convicted on that charge, you can face one year in jail with a possible fine up up to $1,000. Once you have over 20 grams of marijuana in your possession, you will be charged with a felony. That comes with a possible jail sentence of up to five years and a fine of up to $5,000.
Those same statues apply to selling or growing pot. Less than 20 grams is a misdemeanor and over 20 grams and up to 25 pounds is considered a felony. The same sentences and fines are applied to those types of convictions.
If you are arrested for selling, distributing or growing more than 25 pounds of pot in a single incident you will be considered a trafficker. These felony convictions come with mandatory minimum sentences. That means a judge is required to sentence a convicted felon to a specific amount of jail time without any chance of parole.
For trafficking under 2,000 pounds or 2,000 plants the mandatory jail time is three years plus a $25,000 fine. In a conviction pertaining to 10,000 pounds or 10,000 plants, the offender will be sentence to seven years of jail time and a $50,000 fine. Any amount over 10,000 results in a mandatory 15 year prison term and a fine of $200,000.
Additional Florida Marijuana Penalties
If a person is convicted of selling or delivering any amount of pot within 200 feet of a college, park or public housing complex or within 1,000 feet of a school, daycare center or church they are looking at up to 15 years behind bars and a $10,000 fine.
If you are caught with marijuana paraphernalia in your possession then you will be charged with a misdemeanor and face up to one year in jail along with a fine of $1,000. Any marijuana drug conviction in the state of Florida also triggers and automatic suspension of a driver’s license for anywhere between six months and up to two years.