Edison Township Prescription Legend Drug Attorneys
While prescription legend drug possession and distribution charges are handled separately from other drug possession charges, they are prosecuted just as severely if not more severely than most drug-related offenses one can commit in Edison Township. If you or a loved one has been charged with an offense of prescription legend drug possession or distribution in Edison Township, whether the drug in question was one of the many popular prescription painkillers (i.e. Vicodin, Percocet, Oxycodone, Morphine, etc.), a popular anxiety medication (such as Valium or Xanax), or any other drug that cannot be sold over the counter, you cannot afford to face these charges alone. Here at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, with over 100 years of collective experience defending against criminal charges and countless decades serving Edison clients, we know that we have the experience to help you obtain the best result possible on your or your loved one’s charge.
Possession & Distribution of Prescription Legend Drugs
All prescription drug-related offenses are governed by N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5. Under this statute, it is illegal for a person to possess for either personal consumption or with intent to distribute a prescription legend drug. “Prescription Legend Drug,” for the purposes of this statute, means any drug which under Federal or State law requires dispensing by prescription or order of a licensed physician, veterinarian or dentist and is required to bear the statement “Rx only” or a similar warning that such drug may be sold or dispensed only upon the prescription of a licensed medical practitioner. A natural defense and really the only good affirmative defense that a person can offer to these charges is that they were actually prescribed the pills by a licensed physician. Otherwise, the degree of the offense will be directly correlated to the quantity of the medication that is possessed or possessed with intent to distribute.
Distribution of Prescription Drugs. In relation to distribution charges under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5, it is a disorderly persons offense for a person to distribute four or fewer dosage units of a prescription legend drug. This increases to a fourth degree offense where the same person distributes four or fewer dosage units for a pecuniary gain. A third degree felony is committed where the offender distributes or possesses with intent to distribute 5 or more dosage units but less than 100 dosage units of a prescription legend drug. Lastly, it is a crime of the second degree where a person distributes or possesses with intent to distribute a prescription legend drug in a quantity of 100 or more dosage units.
Possession of Prescription Drugs. For N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5 possession charges, once again the quantity of the drug in question is important for sentencing purposes. A person commits a disorderly persons offense where the quantity of the prescription legend drug found to be in their possession is four or fewer dosage units. All other possession charges where the quantity is five or more dosage units is a crime of the fourth degree.
The penalties associated with these various grades of offenses and crimes is severe. For a disorderly persons offense, whether a distribution or possession charge, a person can be subject to a fine of up to $1000 and possibly up to 6 months of incarceration. For a fourth degree offense, the offender may be subject to up to 18 months in prison, as well as up to $10,000 in fines. For a third degree offense, which relates only to distribution charges, the penalties and fines only get worse. A third degree offense carries with it the possibility of incarceration for between 3 and 5 years, as well as fines, deviating from normal sentencing guidelines under N.J.S.A. 2C:43-3, of up to $200,000. For a second degree offense, the most severe offense that person can commit under this statute, the penalty is up to 10 years of incarceration, as well as fines, once again deviating from N.J.S.A. 2C:43-3, of up to $300,000.