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Florida Drug Defense Attorney > Blog > Drug Crime Defense > Lack of Criminal Intent in Drug Cases

Lack of Criminal Intent in Drug Cases


When police conduct a traffic stop and find a baggie of white powder in your car, leading you to get charged with drug possession, you can’t argue that it is a mistaken identity, that the person who was behind the wheel of the car where the drugs were found and whose name and picture are on the driver’s license you showed to the cops was not you.  If they found two Adderall pills in the glove compartment, you can argue that you have a valid prescription for Adderall, but that defense doesn’t work if the drugs are a home-packaged bag of white powder.  If the powder tests positive for heroin, your defense that you have a prescription for it will fall flat, since heroin is a Schedule I controlled substance, which means that doctors cannot legally prescribe it.  You are not in much better shape if the powder turns out to be a combination of cocaine, fentanyl, and ordinary household ingredients; both drugs are Schedule II, but in a medical setting, cocaine is only legal for topical use, and fentanyl is often administered as a transdermal patch.  In either case, the drugs are only given to hospitalized patients; no doctor ever prescribed fentanyl and cocaine so patients could drive around with it in powder form.  A better defense might be lack of criminal intent, meaning that you did not possess illegal drugs on purpose.  For help formulating an effective lack of criminal intent in your drug possession case, contact a Florida drug offenses attorney.

Ways to Show Lack of Criminal Intent in a Drug Possession Case

Lack of criminal intent means different things in response to different criminal charges.  If you are being charged with a violent crime, you are claiming lack of criminal intent if you say that you acted in self-defense.  In theft cases, lack of criminal intent means that the legal owner of the allegedly stolen property gave you permission to take it.  The following situations constitute lack of criminal intent in drug possession cases:

  • You did not know that the drugs were in the car (or house or jacket, etc.) where the police found them. This defense might work if you were driving someone else’s car when the police found the drugs, or if someone else had recently borrowed your car.
  • If you are being accused of illegally possessing a controlled substance that is available by prescription, you can argue that you have a valid prescription for the drug.
  • You are keeping or transporting the drugs under duress. The only reason the drugs are with you is because someone threatened to assault you or report you to the police if you did not hold or transport the drugs, so you only did it to avoid physical injury or false criminal accusations.

Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to prove lack of criminal intent through witness testimony or showing your prescription or your text message exchanges at trial.

Contact FL Drug Defense Group About Drug Cases

A Central Florida criminal defense lawyer will help you apply an appropriate defense strategy such as lack of criminal intent.  Contact FL Drug Defense Group in Orlando, Florida to discuss your case.



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