Drug Charges in Florida: Part one of four

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Facing Drug Charges In Florida?  Part one of four…

Useful Information That May Be Helpful In Your Case

Blake & Dorsten, P.A.

Copyright © 2016 by Blake & Dorsten, P.A.

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission of the author.

ISBN:  978-1-941645-67-3

Disclaimer

This publication is intended to be informational only. No legal advice is being given, and no attorney-client relationship is intended to be created by reading this material. If you are facing legal issues, whether criminal or civil, seek professional legal counsel to get your questions answered.

Blake & Dorsten, P.A. At Law

4707 140th Ave N, #104

Clearwater, FL 33762

(727)286-6141

www.blakedorstenlaw.com

Testimonials

“I had some issues with my teenage son that caught me completely off guard. I felt like he needed to be represented by an attorney I could trust and who would treat us like every day people and not like a case number. After interviewing a couple other attorneys and feeling like I had just met with used car salesmen, a friend of mine recommended Mr. Dorsten. My son and I met with him and I immediately was relieved. He handled my case in a most professional and timely manner. He was informative and gave us options instead of telling me what I should do. He called to check with me randomly to make sure I did not need anything and expressed genuine concern that I was properly satisfied and had no additional needs or questions. I would suggest Mr. Dorsten to anybody who needs a qualified, smart and honest attorney.”          ‑ Deva

 

“Nick was extremely knowledgeable in handling of my case. He was patient and answered all my questions regarding the charge. He walked me through every step of the way. He went above and beyond the call of duty which I am very thankful for since this was extremely upsetting to our family. Because of his knowledge the case was dismissed.”                                                     ‑ Debbie

 

“I had an out of town warrant in Pinellas County for a VOP. Mr. Dorsten answered all of my questions and did exactly what he said he would do. He always either answered the phone right away or called me back that day. His pricing was very fair and I would highly recommend Mr. Dorsten to anyone.”             ‑ A Criminal Defense Client

Table Of Contents

About The Authors. 7

What Are Controlled Substances?. 13

What Are The Schedules Of Controlled Substances Under Florida Law?. 13

What Determines Whether A Drug Falls Under A Misdemeanor Or Felony?. 14

What Is Considered Drug Trafficking?. 15

About The Authors

Rex R. Blake, Esq.

Rex R. Blake, Esq was born and raised on a small town farm outside Cincinnati, Ohio. It was there he was taught the value of hard work and dedication. He was born into a family of very successful attorneys. Mr. Blake’s family has a long pedigree of assisting clients and practicing law. Mr. Blake uses that experience to work for you. Mr. Blake’s Grandfather, Rodney Blake, was admitted to practice law in 1932 started the largest firm in his town and later was a prominent Judge for many years to come. His father continued the legacy of practicing law and his been an attorney for almost 50 years specializing in wills, trusts, and estates. Mr. Blake’s oldest sister, Amy, has the prestigious position of clerking for an Article III Federal Judge in the 9th Judicial Circuit where she writes legal opinions that affect the law throughout the country. Finally, his younger sister, Kara, practices family law specializing in adoption in Seattle, Washington.

Attorney Rex R. Blake decided to leave Ohio and attend the top school in Florida at the University of Florida in Gainesville. This is where he graduated with honors in a double major of Finance and Insurance. While at Florida he was a member of many distinguished academic fraternities as well as social fraternities.

Attorney Rex R. Blake decided to continue his education at the University of Florida where he applied and was accepted to a dual degree program obtaining his MBA and Juris Doctor degree in only just four years. During this rigorous program he continued studying details of business while specializing in Decisional and Informational Sciences. Mr. Blake applied and became a Certified Legal Intern in the State Attorney’s Office located in Gainesville, Florida under State Attorney Bill Cervone. This is where Mr. Blake discovered his passion and talent for trying jury trials. While still in law school, he tried 3 DUI trials and a petit theft trial while still officially being and intern.

Mr. Blake also clerked for Rissman, Weisberg, and McClain, P.A. in Orlando, Florida specializing in Insurance defense. This valuable experienced helped him with insight as to insurance companies’ plans in his Personal Injury cases.

Mr. Blake graduated with a joint degree JD/MBA and started his career in the State Attorneys Office of the sixth  Judicial Circuit in Clearwater, Florida. He held many positions in the office trying the smallest cases to misdemeanors and DUI’s to murder trials. Mr. Blake was featured on the hit “Women Behind Bars” for a murder case he was the lead prosecutor in as well as many cases that were featured in the media.

Mr. Blake handled thousands of cases during his seven years as a prosecutor rising through the ranks very quickly. Mr. Blake promoted to felony prosecutor in just 16 months. He held positions as Lead Trial Attorney, Traffic Court Prosecutor, Sex Crimes Prosecutor, and Violation of Probation Prosecutor. Mr. Blake combines all his experience and strengths to get the best possible results for his clients.

Shortly thereafter, Rex Blake and Nicholas Dorsten decided to team up and combine their talents to form Blake & Dorsten, P.A.

While we can never guarantee what will ultimately happen to your case (don’t let any criminal defense attorney guarantee you a certain result), we can pledge to uphold the same principles that have guided our legal careers to date and have produced the many successes that you have either read or heard about.

 

Nicholas J. Dorsten, Esq.

A proud member of the National Trial Lawyers Top 100 trial attorneys and the National Association of Distinguished Counsel Top one percent of lawyers, Nicholas Dorsten was born and raised in Ohio. He obtained his B.A. degree from Kent State University, majoring in History and even played a little football for the Kent State “Golden Flashes”. While at Kent, he was lucky enough to be part of an academic fraternity and receive the Kent State athletic/academic award banquet membership.

After college, he chose to follow in his father’s footsteps by becoming a lawyer. He enrolled in law school at the University Of Toledo School Of Law, where he received a full scholarship. At this school, he participated in a local law review and several moot court presentations.

During law school, Nicholas Dorsten utilized his summers gaining criminal law experience with the hope of becoming a prosecutor upon graduation. After the first year of law school, he was privileged to clerk for a local leading judge. After his second year of law school, he became a certified legal intern in Toledo, trying and resolving criminal cases. The experience gained in these positions allowed him to be chosen, and sworn in, as an Assistant State Attorney in the State of Florida.

Over the next five years, he quickly rose through the ranks at the Pinellas and Pasco State Attorney’s Office. This progression allowed Nicholas to prosecute a wide variety of criminal cases. As an Assistant State Attorney, he held positions such as a Lead Trial Attorney, a Felony Domestic Violence attorney and a Child Abuse/Sex Crimes attorney.

During his five years there, Nicholas Dorsten prosecuted and obtained convictions in numerous high-profile cases in the Tampa Bay area including multiple charges of Murder, Conspiracy to Commit Murder, Attempted Murder in the First Degree, Sexual Battery, Armed Robbery, Armed Burglary, Aggravated Battery, Aggravated Assault, Trafficking in Illegal Drugs, DUI Manslaughter and a variety of other property, alcohol, and narcotics-related offenses.

After five years of public service at the State Attorney’s Office, he elected to work with a leading Personal Injury Attorney in the Tampa area. He attended numerous personal injury seminars and workshops where he honed his trial skills. During his time at that office, Nicholas traveled throughout the state of Florida, trying numerous personal injury and car accident cases. During his time at the firm he won or settled millions of dollars’ for his numerous injury clients.

After that, it was time to utilize his vast array of training and experience to help protect the rights of everyday citizens that have been accused of wrongdoing. These rights, that he swore to uphold and abide by as an Assistant State Attorney, are the bedrock of our criminal justice system. They are the foundation upon which our system rests. Without an experienced criminal and personal injury trial attorney to protect your rights, the system will be stacked against you. Blake & Dorsten knows that from the inside out. Nicholas has since defended numerous high-profile cases throughout Pinellas and Hillsborough. He has been featured in The Tampa Bay Times, Bay News 9, and local NBC, ABC, CBS and Fox affiliates.

Education:

J.D., University of Toledo School of Law; Graduated Cum Laude; B.A., Kent State University

Jurisdictions Admitted To Practice:

Florida (2002), District of Columbia (2003), Middle District Court of Florida (2008)

 

 

What Are Controlled Substances?

In layman’s terms, this would refer to a drug or a chemical whose manufacture, possession or use is regulated or controlled by the government.

What Are The Schedules Of Controlled Substances Under Florida Law?

There are five different schedules in Florida and they come under statute 893.03. Schedule 1 includes drugs with a high potential for abuse with no accepted medical use. As of 2015, there are over 58 types of substances, including heroin, bath salts and other highly addictive, highly dangerous drugs that no doctor would sign off on.

Schedule 2 is very similar to drugs with a high potential for abuse, but they have restricted medical use. These involve pill mills, and drugs that come under this schedule are Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, Opium, and codeine.

Schedule 3 includes drugs with a potential for abuse but accepted medical use.

Schedule 4 and 5 drugs are very similar but just vary in regards to levels, meaning a low potential for abuse and accepted medical use. Something like that would include certain stimulants and very low amounts of dangerous drugs.

Schedule 4 includes Alprazolam, which can be addictive and there are numerous medical uses for it.

What Determines Whether A Drug Falls Under A Misdemeanor Or Felony?

In Florida, basically, all drugs other than marijuana would automatically result in a felony although anything over 20 grams of Marijuana would be considered a felony charge as well. That would be a third-degree felony which would be punishable by up to 5 years in prison.

As far as misdemeanors, possession of certain drugs without a prescription, under 20 grams of marijuana and possession of paraphernalia would be considered a first-degree misdemeanor and both of those would be punishable by up to 1 year in a county jail.

What Is Considered Drug Trafficking?

When people think about drug trafficking itself, they often assume the person charged with it would be a hardcore gangster who was selling large amounts of dangerous drugs. In reality, drug trafficking means that the person could either be selling it, transporting it or be in possession of certain quantities of a controlled substance.

This is very drug-specific and very weight-specific, although one thing that trafficking has in common is that it would always be a first-degree felony, meaning it would be punishable by up to 30 years. Drug or weight specific means, for instance, a different amount of pills like hydrocodone would be able to trigger the trafficking charge versus a certain weight amount for cocaine.

Crack would have a different weight amount than cocaine, just as heroin would have a different weight amount. For marijuana, it would need to be 25 pounds, which is a lot and it would probably fill several garbage bags full before it actually triggered trafficking penalties.

To really get an idea of the trafficking amount a client is facing, the person would almost always need to sit down with the attorney because the attorney could either calculate this and it really depends on what controlled substance the person had been arrested for…

PART TWO OF FOUR COMING SOON…

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