On the morning of Jan. 19, Miami Beach Police took a man into custody on numerous charges, some of which were possession of cocaine with intent to deliver, possession with intent to sell within 1,000 feet of a school and possession for the purpose of trafficking. The police claim that the 48-year-oldman is a “well-known” drug dealer on Ocean Drive.

With a search warrant, a Miami Beach SWAT team and a Strategic Investigation squad scoured the man’s apartment, reportedly leading them to find money, in the amount of $33,207, and to seize 226.6 grams of cocaine. The man did not resist arrest.

Preceding this event, reports say that detectives working undercover and pretending to be buyers had conducted several drug transactions with the man for two weeks. While making a deal, the man supposedly made contact with the detectives 325 feet away from a school, Fienberg-Fisher K-8 Center, located on Washington Avenue.

Although the state of Florida takes drug charges seriously, defendants in drug cases still have rights to protect. For instance, according to the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, every American has the right to be protected against “unreasonable search and seizure.” A legal search can only take place if the police have consent, a search warrant or probable cause in exigent circumstances. Accordingly, a trial may hinge on whether the evidence collected during the execution of the search was in violation of the defendant’s rights or it was done by the book.

As a result, it is advisable for any defendant under drug charges to contact a legal professional who is aware of both the state and federal drug laws. By questioning how the evidence against a defendant was collected or by negotiating with the prosecution, a legal professional may be able to obtain alternative sentences for their client, such as diversionary programs, rehabilitation programs and addiction treatment.

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