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Florida Criminal Defense Law Blog

Police accuse man of intending to deal cocaine

On Jan. 7, a Florida man who was accused of intending to distribute cocaine was taken into custody by the Sarasota Police Department. Authorities reportedly made the arrest after they received a number of reports of possible drug deals occurring at a particular location in Sarasota.

The location was in the general area of Leon Avenue and 23rd Street, and it was near a church and a community park. Police approached the accused man at about 11:15 p.m. after he was spotted with an open container. The man, age 30, allegedly resisted the officers before he was placed into custody. While the authorities were searching the man, they reportedly found 37 pieces of crack cocaine in the man's pocket. As a result, he was charged with felony cocaine possession, resisting a police office, violating Florida's open container law and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Former school director sentenced to 18 months for voyeurism

A former Florida high school employee pleaded guilty to video voyeurism charges on Jan. 10. He had been the athletic director at the school for 11 years and served as the coach of the girls' lacrosse team for three years.

According to prosecutors, the 51-year-old man had put a disguised camera in a digital alarm clock. This camera took images and video of a 17-year-old student without clothing. Authorities said that the camera contained an SD memory card with 149 video files and 35 photographs of the girl.

Woman facing felony drug charges following traffic stop

On Jan. 8, it was reported that a Florida woman was taken into custody after authorities found cocaine and drugs in her vehicle. Authorities said that the 31-year-old driver had her two kids in the car when she was pulled over.

An officer reportedly pulled the woman's vehicle over on the Turnpike near Port St. Lucie for a window tint violation. After observing the children in the vehicle, the officer also reportedly noted that there was the smell of raw marijuana coming from the car. The woman told the officer that the vehicle was also regularly driven by her husband and gave consent for a search.

Bill gives border agents more fentanyl screening equipment

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents in Florida can expect to receive chemical screening devices to help stop incoming shipments of fentanyl. Congress recently passed a bill that assigns money to support federal agents' mission to detect the powerful synthetic opioid. The International Narcotics Trafficking Emergency Response by Detecting Incoming Contraband with Technology Act awaits the president's signature.

Fentanyl possesses an opiate potency as much as 50 times higher than heroin. Compared to morphine, fentanyl can be 100 times stronger. Most illicit fentanyl or chemically similar compounds reaching the United States come through the mail or couriers from Mexico or China. Due to the strength of the drug, smugglers only need to move small amounts at a time, which limits authorities' ability to find it.

Your legal gun isn't legal if you use marijuana at all

It's highly doubtful that anyone involved in the creation of the Constitution or the Second Amendment would have any way of knowing the challenges modern society faces. That fact is clear in the constantly waging social battle over gun control and gun ownership laws.

Gun control advocates often state that the Constitution came from an age where a firearm could not kill dozens in a few seconds. Gun rights advocates, on the other hand, point to the clear language that shows the intent was to allow essentially unrestricted access to these powerful tools of self-defense. Unfortunately, the federal government has taken a stance on firearms, in some cases, that could reduce or eliminate Second Amendment protections for some citizens.

Man sentenced to life after traveling to U.S. for sex

On Dec. 14, it was reported that a German man who flew into Florida for the purpose of meeting with a 13-year-old girl was sentenced to life in prison. The man had reportedly attempted to solicit the 13-year-old for sadomasochism.

The 55-year-old man allegedly thought that he was making arrangements with the teen's father; however, an undercover agent who was looking for online predators arranged the meetup. On June 16, the man flew into Orlando International Airport. He was picked up by the undercover agent and taken to Brevard. He was taken into custody at a pre-arranged traffic stop.

Teen accuses registered sex offender of sexual battery

Tallahassee police officers searched the home of a 66-year-old man after arresting him. They were investigating the sexual battery accusations of a Florida teenager who said that he took nude photographs of her. The activities had allegedly gone on during the past year. Inside the man's home, police looked for evidence but failed to find any printed or digital pictures of the young woman.

The arrest report revealed a history of past sex crime convictions. He had already been a registered sex offender at the time of his most recent arrest. An out-of-state arrest recorded accusations from multiple teenagers and adult women who claimed that he wanted to photograph them while engaged in sex acts with his grandson.

Man pleads guilty to securities fraud charge

A former Florida day trader pleaded guilty on Dec. 11 to one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud and one count of securities fraud after admitting to playing a role in a ring to steal confidential details from investment banks. According to authorities, the stolen confidential information was used for the purpose of helping clients make trades.

Authorities said that the 56-year-old man and several conspirators used the confidential information to short-sell the securities on a minimum of 13 companies from June 2010 and July 2013. As part of the scheme, the convicted man and other conspirators posed as portfolio managers who were looking to buy securities from the investment bankers. The accused reportedly agreed not to disclose the confidential information to others or make the trades before the upcoming offerings were made public. The former day trader admitted that he made more than $760,000 in these trades.

5 arrested following Florida drug bust

According to a report from the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office Drug Task Force, four adults and one minor were taken into custody in Jasper following a drug bust. The incident occurred in Jasper on Nov. 30.

Officers reportedly searched the home in which the four adults and minor were located. Inside of one room where a 28-year-old man and 20-year-old woman were sleeping, the officers found baggies, a loaded handgun and a safe. When the officers opened the safe, they reportedly found 3 grams of methamphetamine inside of a bag and almost 2 pounds of synthetic marijuana.

Teacher charged after selling marijuana to middle school students

On Dec. 8, a substitute teacher was taken into custody and held on a $90,500 bond after she allegedly sold marijuana to two middle school students in Florida. Hendry County Sheriff's deputies reportedly set up the sting operation that led to criminal allegations against the teacher after the students admitted to smoking the drug. Authorities say that the 35-year-old woman is now facing a number of drug-related charges in connection with the case.

According to news sources, the charges include two counts of possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell within 1,000 feet of a school; two counts of possession of a synthetic drug with intent to sell within 1,000 feet of a school; two counts of possession of marijuana within 1,000 feet of a school; two counts of neglect of a child; two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor; and two counts of interference. The teacher was detained at the Hendry County Jail.

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