People in Florida who are charged with drug possession may also face charges of drug manufacturing or cultivation. A person could be charged with drug manufacturing or cultivation if it’s discovered that he or she possesses ingredients that are commonly used to make illegal drugs. However, prosecutors usually must find more than one drug ingredient to prove that a person was planning to manufacture or cultivate a controlled substance.
An example of a drug ingredient that could lead to drug manufacturing charges is pseudoephedrine. Pseudoephedrine was once a popular cold medication before being outlawed and is now commonly used to manufacture methamphetamine. A person who is found to possess pseudoephedrine may be charged with the intent to manufacture drugs, but a criminal charge is unlikely to stick if pseudoephedrine was the only ingredient that the police found. In order to have a strong drug manufacturing case, the prosecution may need to find both pseudoephedrine and laboratory equipment.
Drug manufacturing or cultivation charges are typically felonies, and these charges may lead to a prison sentence, fines and probation. A defendant in a drug manufacturing case could be handed an elevated sentence if he or she was convicted of manufacturing controlled substances in a school zone.
There are many people who have legitimate reasons to possess certain items that may be used to manufacture or cultivate illegal drugs. For example, pharmacists or chemists might own laboratory equipment for which they have legal permits. A criminal defense attorney may be able to help an individual who has been charged with drug crimes prove that he or she had no intention to manufacture illegal drugs.