Can You Use an Alibi Defense in a Drug Case?
Somewhere in the living room of a rented single-family home in Florida, a McMansion turned drug den, a group of people are sitting on couches around a coffee table, passing around a joint even though each of them is already high on a unique combination of substances. Some of the participants are lifelong friends, and others are virtual strangers, but weed makes drug buddies out of everyone. At some point, the conversation turns to speculation. “What would you do if you got caught with drugs?” Unless your drug buddies are lawyers or law school dropouts, offering an alibi will probably be among the most popular suggestions. Your drug buddies may have some interesting alibis in mind, but, unlike in fiction, alibi is not the default defense in criminal court; in drug cases, it might not help you at all. If you are facing drug charges, instead of taking advice from your friends, you should contact a Florida drug offenses attorney.
How the Alibi Defense Works in Florida
The alibi defense is when you say that you are not guilty of the alleged crime because you were somewhere else when it happened. Presenting a convincing alibi in Florida is more challenging than it seems, though. If you plan to present an alibi defense, you must submit a notice of alibi to the court at least 10 days before your trial, indicating the place where you claim to have been at the time of the crime. This way, the prosecution can summon witnesses who may be able to contradict your claim. At least five days before the trial, the prosecution must notify you of the witnesses it plans to summon, so that you can think of ways to refute their arguments.
Can You Still Be Guilty Even If You Have an Alibi?
A persuasive alibi defense is enough to get you acquitted of offenses that require you to be present at the location of the crime, such as burglary or assault. If you are facing drug charges other than simple possession, though, where you were when the drugs and the money changed hands is not what determines your innocence or guilt. You may still be convicted of drug trafficking or conspiracy to a drug offense even if you were never in the same room with the drugs. What matters in these cases is whether you knew about the drug deal and whether you communicated with other people about it, even if your role in the operation was limited to some text messages. In this case, even the most airtight alibi will not get you acquitted. Therefore, you should use other defenses, such as that the text messages the prosecution has introduced as evidence do not prove that you were involved in the drug operation.
Contact FL Drug Defense Group About Drug Cases
A Central Florida criminal defense lawyer builds an effective defense strategy for your drug crime case. Contact FL Drug Defense Group in Orlando, Florida to discuss your case.