GBL is a synthetic depressant known for producing potent euphoria and disinhibition. It is also a common solvent used as a paint stripper and stain remover. The federal Drug Enforcement Agency has documented over 15,000 overdoses and many deaths resulting from it. Side effects reported in connection with GBL include dangerously slow breathing and heart rate, coma, vomiting, and unconsciousness. If you are charged with GBL trafficking or trafficking in another addictive substance, such as hydrocodone or flunitrazepam, you should be aware that this crime is punished very harshly and consult a Bradenton GBL trafficking lawyer. Hanlon Law protects the rights of the accused.GBL Trafficking Can Lead to Substantial Penalties
If you are caught with a threshold amount of GBL, you can be charged with trafficking even if you have no other connections to the criminal underworld and no prior criminal record. You can be charged and convicted even if what you were caught possessing is a mixture that includes GBL but also has filler or other controlled substances. Your potential sentence is based on the weight of the total substance, instead of the pure GBL.
GBL trafficking is a first-degree felony that carries a mandatory minimum sentence. If you are caught with 1 kg-5 kg of GBL, the court must sentence you to a mandatory minimum of 3 years in prison and a $50,000 fine. If you are caught with 5 kg-10 kg of GBL, the court must sentence you to a mandatory minimum of 7 years’ imprisonment and a $100,000 fine. If you are caught with 10 kg or more of GBL, the court must sentence you to a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 calendar years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
It is a capital crime to manufacture or bring into Florida 150 kg or more of GBL or a GBL-containing mixture if you know that the likely result of this manufacturing or importation will be someone's death. Capital crimes can result in life sentences without the possibility of parole.
Although mandatory minimum sentences are automatic, convictions are not. Prosecutors need to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. A GBL trafficking attorney in Bradenton may be able to raise a reasonable doubt in a number of ways. In some cases, the prosecution’s witnesses are not credible, and it may be possible to call into question their account of what happened.
In other cases, there are substantial procedural problems with how an investigation was conducted or how an arrest occurred. The police are supposed to safeguard your Fourth Amendment rights when they are interested in searching your property or you. If the police did not have probable cause to conduct a search, for example, it may be possible to get the GBL found in that search suppressed. Similarly, if the police needed a warrant to search but did not get it, it may be possible for a Bradenton GBL trafficking attorney to get the GBL found in the warrantless search suppressed.
If you are not able to avoid a conviction, and you are under age 21 on the date of sentencing, such as if you are a college student, we can ask the court to impose a youthful offender sentence. The court may impose a youthful offender sentence instead of a mandatory minimum sentence if: (1) you are under age 21 on the sentencing date, (2) you were adjudicated guilty or pled guilty or nolo contendere to a non-capital GBL trafficking crime or a crime not involving a life sentence, and (3) you have not previously been sentenced as a youthful offender. However, you will not be able to get the court to agree to this departure from mandatory minimum sentencing if the crime at issue is manufacturing or bringing 150 kg of GBL or more into Florida, since that is a capital crime.Discuss Your Options With a GBL Trafficking Lawyer in the Bradenton Area
One of the largest GBL seizures of all time arose from a six-year investigation that started in 1999 and led to the arrest and guilty plea of Pete Rose, Jr., the son of the MLB all-time hits leader, in 2005. The seizure involved 280 gallons of GBL held in a storage unit. If you have been charged with trafficking in this narcotic or in another drug, such as cocaine or meth, you should retain an experienced lawyer like our firm's founder, Will Hanlon, who has represented the accused since 1994. You can call Hanlon Law at 941.462.1789 or contact us through our online form.