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Michael A. Gottlieb, P.A.
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Can you be arrested for having drug paraphernalia?

It's possible to be arrested and convicted of drug crimes for possessing drug paraphernalia even if no drugs are found in your possession. Numerous items are considered drug paraphernalia. Under the law, it includes any equipment that can be used to consume, conceal or produce illegal drugs.

This can include bongs, small spoons, roach clips and pipes. State laws vary. However, under federal law, drug paraphernalia includes "any equipment, product or material of any kind which is primarily intended or designed for use in manufacturing, compounding, converting, concealing, producing, processing, preparing, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance."

Drug paraphernalia is often marketed and sold in a way that implies that it if for "legitimate" purposes.

When people are stopped by law enforcement officials or if officers enter their home and they have only so-called "drug paraphernalia" in their possession, but no evidence of drugs, a drug charge may be far more difficult to make and turn into a conviction than if there is evidence of illegal drugs in their possession.

Florida law does allow medical marijuana for people suffering from certain conditions. Therefore, they may need these implements in order to use the drugs that have been prescribed to them by a physician.

If you or a loved one is facing drug charges based on evidence of drug paraphernalia in their possession, it's essential to get experienced legal guidance. State and federal drug laws vary, and enforcement is not always consistent. You don't want to be a victim of political battles regarding drug use.

Source: U.S. Department of Justice, "Drug Paraphernalia Fast Facts," accessed April 12, 2017

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