Tampa Possession of Firearm By Convicted Felon Attorney
Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone convicted of a felony offense to own, transport, or ship a firearm. It is also illegal for convicted felons to own, ship, or transport ammunition that has been distributed in foreign commerce or interstate. Due to the fact that convicted felons already have a criminal history, often which involves violent offenses, the penalties faced for possessing a firearm are harsh. Our Tampa possession of firearms by convicted felony attorney will protect your rights and provide the strong defense needed to help you retain your freedom.
Penalties for Possession of Firearm By Convicted Felon
Federal law classifies the crime of possession of firearm by a convicted felon as a Class D felony. Those convicted face a maximum of ten years in federal prison, three years of supervision upon release, and a maximum fine of $250,000. The United States Sentencing Guidelines stipulate that anyone who is convicted of the offense must be assigned a base offense level between 12 and 26. At this level, a minimum of 10 to 78 months in federal prison must be served if convicted. This guideline must be applied before any aggravating or mitigating circumstances are considered.
The Armed Career Criminal Act is another piece of federal legislation that addresses possession of firearms by convicted felons. Under this law, anyone who has three previous state or federal convictions for serious drug offenses or violent felonies must serve at least 15 years in federal prison. Under the Act, a violent felony is one that meets the following definitions:
- An element of threat or use of physical force against someone else,
- Involves arson, burglary, or extortion, or
- Constitutes a criminal offense similar to arson, burglary, or extortion.
A serious drug offense under the Act is any crime involving drugs that is punishable by at least ten years in federal prison.
Defenses to Possession of Firearm By Convicted Felon
Although facing charges for possessing a firearm by a convicted felon is scary, there are several defenses available. These include:
- Civil rights restored: If you have had your federal rights to own a firearm restored, you cannot be convicted of the federal crime of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon. Still, you may face charges under state law if your state civil rights have not been restored.
- Illegal search and seizure: If the firearm in question was obtained by law enforcement during an illegal search and seizure, this can provide a solid defense. Any evidence obtained through an illegal search and seizure is inadmissible and so, it cannot be used against you.
- Substantial assistance: Although this is not technically a defense, the prosecution may drop or reduce the charges when the defendant provides substantial assistance in the investigation or prosecution of others involved in drug trafficking or other serious drug offenses.
Contact Our Possession of Firearm By Convicted Felon Attorney
If you are being prosecuted by the federal government, it is important to speak to our Tampa possession of firearm by a convicted felony attorney at OA Law Firm. Call us now or contact us online to schedule a consultation and to learn more about your legal options.