28th July 2011
The law was challenged on the grounds that it does not include an intent requirement, meaning that a defendant can be convicted of a cocaine offense in Florida even if the defendant did not know he was selling cocaine. Or, as the judge put it in her ruling, in Florida, a “person is guilty of a drug offense if he delivers a controlled substance without regard to whether he does so purposefully, knowingly, recklessly, or negligently.”
Florida is the only state in the nation to have expressly eliminated intent as an element of drug offenses, according to the ruling.
“Other states have rejected such a draconian and unreasonable construction of the law that would criminalize the ‘unknowing’ possession of a controlled substance,” Judge Scriven wrote, concluding that Florida’s drug law is unconstitutional “on its face.”
Well done, thou good and faithful (public) servant. Unfortunately, there are still a lot of laws on the books, especially federal laws, where you can get it packed up your pooper regardless of intent (which has always been a component of criminal offenses, until the present degenerate age).