Trafficking in Cannabis – Weight Calculation

 “Excess Water” in Cannabis

In this case, the Court of Appeals found that water can be used in calculating weight of cannabis – even if it pushes the weight from a non-trafficking amount to a trafficking amount! It held that water is naturally present in cannabis plants and that only “excess” water should be excluded in calculated weight for trafficking purposes. “Excess” water is defined as water that has been extrinsically added to the marijuana or accidentally acquired by the marijuana. Here, the weed was cut and was right away transported when it was seized. It was not exposed to anything “excessive.” Therefore, the defense’s argument of “wet weed” did not fly with the Court of Appeal. The type of water that later drained from the plants while it was in evidence storage was “inherent” in this plant’s vegetable matter. When the marijuana was seized, it weighed 26 pounds. When it dried later, it only weighed 24 pounds. If it’s more than 25 pounds, it’s a higher felony. And based on these circumstances, the higher felony count could be sustained. Scary!

This case can be found at State v. Estrada and State v. Cortina (Florida Law Weekly 3DCA 2771a)



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