One person was arrested after police found a methamphetamines lab in a Clay County hotel this month. Police were called after someone reported a suspicious smell and detectives then found the materials used to make meth inside a hotel room, according to a report on News4Jax. One person was arrested, though the exact charges were not reported in the media. In any Clay County Drug Case involving meth, the charges are undoubtedly felonies. The type of charge – felony or misdemeanor – and the degree of the charge in Clay County Drug Cases is primarily based on two main factors: the type of drug the person is accused of having and the amount of the drug in question. When it comes to methamphetamines, there are rarely any misdemeanor charges. They are other circumstances in Clay County Drug Crimes Cases that can lead to enhance penalties, which are addressed below.
For example, manufacturing methamphetamines is a second-degree felony, with a maximum penalty of 15 years in state prison. In this Clay County Drug Crimes Case, the criminal activity was discovered when someone smelled the odor. When people are manufacturing methamphetamines, a distinct odor is produced. That odor can also be toxic, which is why the television station reported that several other rooms in the hotel had to be evacuated. The toxicity of the fumes is also why there are enhanced penalties if the suspect is accused of manufacturing meth when there are children present. If someone is arrested for making meth with someone under the age of 16 present, the charge becomes a first-degree felony and the maximum penalty doubles to 30 years. More importantly, there is a five-year minimum mandatory sentence that kicks in. Minimum mandatory sentences are particularly important because every single day of the sentence must be served, as opposed to the 85 percent of a sentence that inmates often serve, provided they stay out of trouble while they are in prison.
Drug trafficking charges could also apply in this Clay County Drug Crimes Case, depending on how much of the drug was seized by police. A person does not have to be physically selling drugs to be charged with trafficking. Trafficking is based solely on the amount. For methamphetamines, the trafficking threshold begins at 14 grams. For comparison, possession of marijuana is still a misdemeanor at that amount. But for methamphetamines, having between 14 and 28 grams is a first-degree felony with a minimum mandatory sentence of three years in prison. Our Clay County Drug Crimes Attorney knows how different drugs are treated in the Florida statutes, and can explain the different ramifications and penalties to you or your loved one so you can make the best decision on how to proceed with the charges.
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 Clay County Drug Crimes Attorney, Victoria “Tori” Mussallem, is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.