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Your Guide to Prescription Drug Crimes in Texas

As prescription drugs are repeatedly used for non-medical purposes in the United States, Texas lawmakers, and law enforcement services strive to control the issue. The state of Texas has various laws in place to halt the use of prescription drugs. 

If you have been charged with a prescription drug crime here in Texas, it is imperative that you understand the charges that have been levied against you, the penalties, and what you can do to fight them. If you need immediate representation, contact our Houston drug crime lawyers today. 

Below is a guide to Texas prescription drug crimes. For more information, the Law Office of David A. Breston can answer any questions you might have, protect your rights, ensure that you understand your options, and construct a powerful strategy to fight the charges waged against you. 

Texas Prescription Drug Crimes

Texas laws concerning prescription drug crimes are classified from two angles. Obtaining prescription drugs illegally or being in possession of them unlawfully. Listed below are offenses related to prescription drug crimes.

Unlawfully Obtaining Prescription Drugs

A great deal of the illegal conduct used to obtain prescription drugs employ fraudulent behaviors. Some fraudulent schemes may include deception, forging prescriptions, and misrepresentation.

Some of the instances where these practices are put into action are as follows: 

  • Attempting to, or actually obtaining, a controlled substance from a doctor when the substance is not actually needed. 
  • Acquiring, or attempting to acquire, a controlled substance through misrepresentation or fraudulent prescriptions.
  • When documentation is required, supplying false information is a crime.
  • Disclosing prescription information without authorized disclosure
  • Invalid aim to deliver a prescription or a prescription form
  • Using Schedule II prescription drugs that were issued to someone else. 
  • Forging a prescription

These laws apply to patients, users, doctors, and healthcare professionals. The same legislation also applies to prescription drug manufacturers and distributors. There are proper channels and regulations about the proper, lawful handling of prescription drugs.

Doctor shopping, or visiting multiple doctors to have various prescriptions filled, occurs often and covers a range of charges mentioned in the list above. Often, in Texas, patients are charged with these crimes.

Illegal Possession of Prescription Drugs and the Charges They Carry

The offenses listed below are related to the illegal possession or transfer of prescription pharmaceuticals: 

  • Offenses of commercial registrant: This charge is an umbrella charge for specific prescription drug offenses. They apply to people and entities who are authorized to legally handle controlled pharmaceuticals.
  • If the registrant, who is legally allowed to handle the prescription drugs, converts them for personal use.
  • Diverting prescription drugs to someone else for illegal use is a crime.
  • Schedule I and II prescription substances require an order to distribute legally. If distribution takes place improperly, it becomes a criminal offense.
  • Prescription drugs are required to have a valid registration number throughout the process of manufacturing, prescribing, and distributing. Using a registration number that is not valid during any step of the process is illegal.
  • Construction, distribution, or possession of an appliance or device engineered to counterfeit or reproduce a prescription drug is an illegal offense.
  • It is illegal to possess a prescription or prescription that is not lawfully valid.

The Four Penalty Groups Under the Texas Controlled Substances Act

There are four penalty groups under the Texas Controlled Substances Act. Each prescription drug is part of one of the four groups. The grouping of these drugs determines what the appropriate consequences are for violating the laws concerning each pharmaceutical. 

A Proper Prescription is Required for Possession

Prescription substances are only legal to possess with a prescription from an authorized prescriber. You cannot lawfully possess a prescription drug that is considered a controlled substance without an appropriate prescription in Texas. 

It is crucial to note that you do not have to actually possess the controlled substances to have charges filed against you. The prosecutor only has to prove that you were working with the intention to get them for you to be convicted on charges of possession.

Penalties Based on Weight and Designation

Prescription drugs are classified into penalty groups, but they also depend on the amount of the drug the defendant has in their possession. The degree of crime is determined by the weight of the amount of the drug in possession.

When determining the weight, law enforcement does not discern how much is mixed or cut with another substance. They weigh and base that weight on the entirety of the substance. Once this step is taken, charges can be legally and officially filed.

More times than not, the charges end up as a felonious crime.

Texas Prescription Drug Crime Attorney

Texas prescription drug crimes carry stiff penalties, meaning you will want a Texas drug crime attorney at your side. To understand your rights and options and for the best chances of avoiding severe consequences, contact the Law Office of David A. Breston for help today. 

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