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When you think of drug crimes, you likely think of “street” drugs such as heroin, methamphetamines, or cocaine. You may not realize the consequences that may come with drug crimes involving prescription drugs. Many people believe that prescription drug offenses are not as serious since doctors can lawfully dispense these drugs to the public. However, any possession or distribution of these medications without a valid prescription is illegal just like any other controlled substance, and defendants can face serious penalties.
Barnes Law handles all types of drug-related crimes in the Knoxville area, including cases involving prescription drugs. We thoroughly investigate what happened leading up to and after your arrest, and we formulate aggressive defense strategies for every client. Our criminal defense lawyer understands that each criminal case has its own unique circumstances and legal issues and will navigate the complex criminal process for you. Call today at 865-269-9296 or contact us online to discuss how Barnes Law can help you today.
When a prescription drug has a tendency for abuse or the likelihood of causing dependence, it is classified as a controlled substance. There are seven different schedules of controlled substances in Tennessee, with the most dangerous drugs categorized as Schedule I and the least dangerous as Schedule VII. Prescription drugs are scattered among the schedules, however, it is illegal to possess any scheduled controlled substance without a valid prescription or authority, no matter what schedule it is in.
Some prescription drugs that are commonly involved in crimes include:
Many high school and college students try to obtain drugs like Adderall to stay up longer and study, thinking that it is harmless. They do not realize that possession or distribution of Adderall can result in an arrest and criminal charges, no matter why they wanted to have the drug. It is important to remember that prescription drugs are just that – drugs. If you do not have a valid prescription in your name for a particular substance, you can face criminal charges for possessing that substance.
If you’ve been accused of a drug crime, it’s easy to feel like the odds are stacked against you. This is particularly true in cases where the police found prescription drugs on your person, in your vehicle, or in your home. It’s crucial to understand, however, that there are often legal defenses available that may significantly improve the outcome of your case.
Most drug charges arise after a police search results in the discovery of controlled substances. For this reason, in many drug cases, the most obvious defense is to attack the legality of the search. Under the 4th Amendment of the United States Constitution, the police cannot conduct a search or seizure without a warrant or probable cause, and if they conduct a search without either, any evidence they find can often be suppressed, which means that the prosecution cannot use it in court. Without access to the evidence seized, the state will usually be forced to drop their case entirely. Importantly, the 4th Amendment also applies to government surveillance, so even if your arrest was not the result of a search, you should have an attorney review your case.
Some of the other defenses that are often available in prescription drug cases include the following:
In some cases, a defense attorney’s role is less about raising legal defenses and more about mitigating the consequences that his or her client is facing. An experienced criminal defense lawyer can attempt to negotiate a plea bargain that avoids the most serious consequences with prescription drug charges. In some cases, an attorney may even be able to get you into a diversionary program which could help you avoid a conviction entirely.
Criminal charges related to the possession or sale of prescription drugs are a serious matter and can have significant legal and professional consequences. At Barnes Law, we’re committed to helping people accused of crimes protect their rights.
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