Does Carrying Legally Obtained Marijuana Constitute Drug Trafficking?

With the changes in the legality of marijuana and the differences between states, it can be tricky to understand what constitutes drug trafficking. You may have legally obtained marijuana in one state only to find traveling with it may pose some legal issues. Before you travel with marijuana, even if legally obtained, it’s important to understand where Florida law stands. 

In this brief article, a drug trafficking defense lawyer in Tampa with The Rickman Law Firm discusses key things to keep in mind if traveling with legally obtained marijuana.

Related: When is Medical Marijuana Use Illegal in Florida?

Is Legally Obtained Marijuana Still Legal Across State Lines?

The short answer to this question is: no. Because marijuana is still illegal at the federal level, crossing state lines with it in any form enters federal jurisdiction. Federal law classifies marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug. Drugs, substances, and chemicals with this classification are defined as having “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.” For this reason, it’s not legal to transport legally obtained marijuana across state lines. 

But what if you obtained the marijuana legally in a state like Florida, where you have a medical marijuana card, and travel somewhere it is also legal? Still, the answer is likely no — at least in Florida, it is a no-go. This is because, in order to avoid federal intervention, legal marijuana must follow very strict specific standards. It must be locally grown to be used and sold locally. Even if you have a medical marijuana card, it is, unfortunately, not transferable the same way any other license (like a driver’s license, for example) would be. If you are caught transporting marijuana across state lines, even if obtained legally, you may be charged with drug trafficking. This is a serious charge which can result in fines and jail time. 

Related: The Gray Area of Drug Trafficking Laws

What If You Need Medical Marijuana During Travel?

It’s illegal to bring marijuana in any form on a plane because planes are governed by federal law, in which all forms of marijuana are illegal. Although TSA agents are not necessarily looking for marijuana, they must report it to the police, even if you have a medical marijuana card. 

You may, however, be permitted to travel with hemp-based CBD oil, so long as it has less than 0.3 percent THC and is within the permissible amount of 3 ounces or less for carry-on bags.

Related: The Penalties for Drug Trafficking in Florida

What to Do If Accused of Drug Trafficking Legal Marijuana

If you find yourself accused of drug trafficking, even if you are a user of legally obtained medical cannabis, it’s critical to contact a drug defense attorney in Tampa with The Rickman Law Firm. An attorney will be able to thoroughly discuss all of your legal options and craft the best possible defense for your unique situation.  

For a free consultation with a drug trafficking defense lawyer in Tampa, please contact The Rickman Law Firm today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.


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