Police arrested a father and son last month in St. Johns County, accusing the two of growing marijuana in their home. Both men are charged with cultivating marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia, according to a report in the Florida Times-Union. Cultivation of marijuana is a third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in state prison. Possession of drug paraphernalia is a first-degree misdemeanor, with penalties of up to one year in county jail, so obviously the cultivation charge is the one both men will be most concerned about in this St. Johns County Drug Crimes Case.
Police raided the home after hearing complaints from neighbors, but when they got there the plants had already been harvested, the newspaper reported. Police said they found enough lights and other equipment to charge the men with cultivation, the newspaper reported, though that could be problematic in terms of proving this St. Johns County Drug Crimes Case beyond a reasonable doubt. Cultivation of marijuana becomes a second-degree felony is more than 25 plants are found. Second-degree felonies are punishable by up to 15 years in state prison. Marijuana cultivation penalties in St. Johns County Drug Crimes Cases were increased in 2008 with the Marijuana Grow House Eradication Act. The act significantly decreased the number of plants needed for a second-degree felony charge from 300 down to 25.
Police will have to present evidence in this St. Johns County Drug Crimes Case that shows a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that the men were running a grow operation. It’s not impossible without the actual plants, but it does make it more difficult. One avenue police will likely explore in this St. Johns County Drug Crimes Case is getting one of the defendants to testify against the other and provide information about the grow operation. An early indication would be the father is the mastermind of the operation. The newspaper reported the father was not offered a bond in this St. Johns County Drug Crimes Case, but the son could have been freed with a bond of about $10,000.
Our St. Johns County Drug Crimes Attorney represents people accused of all types of drug crimes – from possession to sale to cultivation. Our St. Johns County Criminal Defense Attorney knows the ins and outs of Florida Drug Crimes Laws and will investigate your case and lay out all of your options so you can make the best decision going forward.
If you or a loved one needs a criminal defense attorney in Jacksonville or the surrounding area, call The Mussallem Law Firm at (904) 365-5200 for a FREE CONSULTATION. Our St. Johns County Drug Crimes Attorney, Victoria “Tori” Mussallem, is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.