With rising awareness of the potential abuse of prescription drugs, Illinois lawmakers have cracked down on the illegal possession and distribution of these drugs. Prescription painkillers and amphetamines can be as addictive as the well-known illegal drugs but are more readily available to some people because of their legal uses. A prescription drug charge in Illinois is a felony offense, and a conviction may result in mandatory prison time. With the right criminal defense lawyer, you can contest the charge and prevent severe consequences.
What Are Criminal Offenses Related to Prescription Drugs?
Prescription drugs are controlled substances, and it is illegal to possess, distribute, or manufacture them without authorization. Ways that someone can violate the prescription drug laws include:
- Possessing a controlled substance without a prescription from a doctor
- Possessing a greater amount of a controlled substance than is authorized by a prescription
- Creating a false prescription in order to obtain a controlled substance
- Visiting multiple doctors in order to obtain multiple prescriptions
- Lying to a doctor in order to receive a prescription
- Sharing a controlled substance with others
- Writing a prescription as a doctor for a non-medical purpose
A criminal charge related to prescription drugs can be anywhere from a Class 4 felony to a Class X felony, depending on the amount you possessed, how you obtained them, and whether you were distributing them to others. A Class 4 felony conviction can result in one-to-three years in prison and a fine of as much as $25,000. A Class X felony conviction can result in a minimum of six years in prison.
What Are Your Defenses?
To prevent yourself from becoming involved in a prescription drug case, it is best to keep your medications in the pharmacy containers with your name on them and locked up so that others cannot take them. You could be in trouble if you are caught with an unmarked bottle of a controlled substance or if someone else is found in possession of a bottle with your name on it. If you are charged, potential offenses include:
- There was no criminal intent in your actions
- You had a prescription for the controlled substance
- The police officer was conducting an illegal search when they found the controlled substance
Contact a Wheaton, Illinois, Criminal Defense Lawyer
A charge for illegal possession or distribution of a prescription drug is a serious matter that requires your full attention. A DuPage County criminal defense lawyer at Stephen A. Brundage, Attorney at Law, will contest the charge against you and work towards a positive resolution. To schedule a consultation, call 630-260-9647.