Prescription Drug Distribution
Trenton NJ Prescription Drug Distribution Attorneys
Abuse of prescription medication and drugs has become a serious problem in New Jersey, particularly misuse of opioid pain pills. The demand for prescription legend drugs is at an all time high and this has led to a higher incident of distribution, selling and possession with intent to distribute this category of controlled dangerous substance (“CDS”). Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Xanax, Percocet, Suboxone and Vicodin tend to be most popular prescription drugs for distribution. Given the rise in illegal prescription drugs, law enforcement agencies throughout the county, including the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, have stepped up their efforts to identify those who sell and distribute prescription legend drugs. If you were charged with distributing a prescription drug in Trenton, Princeton, Lawrence, Hamilton or Ewing, you need an experienced attorney at your side. The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall employ a team of skilled attorneys who understand the nuances of prescription drug offenses, particularly distribution of prescription drugs. The lawyers on our staff have over 100 years of experience, including significant time serving as prosecutors. We definitely have the knowledge and skill to ensure you have every chance of avoiding a conviction and/or penalties for possession with intent to distribute a prescription drug at the Mercer County Superior Court in Trenton or another venue. Contact our office at 609-683-8102 for a free initial consultation with a lawyer now.
Distribution of Prescription Drugs Offense in Mercer County
Distributing prescription drugs is illegal unless you are a physician, pharmacist, or other professional who is licensed to prescribe prescription medication. The law with regard to the offense of distribution of prescription drugs is found at N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5. As can be expected, the seriousness of the offense depends upon the amount of drugs involved. Selling pain pills or another form of prescription legend drug or possessing them with the intent to distribute results in a second degree crime, third degree crime, fourth degree crime or a disorderly persons offense depending on the quantity involved as follows:
Second degree distribution of prescription drugs. A person is guilty of a second degree crime if he knowingly distributes, or possesses with the intent to distribute, a prescription drug or stramonium preparation in an amount of 100 or more dosage units. The penalty for this offense is 5 to 10 years in prison, and a fine of up to $300,000.
Third degree distribution of prescription drugs. A person is guilty of a third degree crime if he knowingly distributes, or possesses with the intent to distribute, a prescription drug or stramonium preparation in an amount of at least five but fewer than 100 dosage units. The penalty for this offense is 3 to 5 years in prison, and a fine of up to $200,000.
Fourth degree distribution of prescription drugs. A person is guilty of a fourth degree crime if he knowingly distributes, or possesses with the intent to distribute, for pecuniary gain a prescription drug or stramonium preparation in an amount of four or fewer dosage units. The maximum penalties for this variety of prescription drug distribution are up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
Disorderly Persons offense of distribution of prescription drugs. A person is guilty of a disorderly persons offense if he knowingly distributes a prescription drug or stramonium preparation in an amount of four or fewer dosage units. The penalty for this offense can be up to 6 months in the county jail and a fine of up to $1,000. (Note: the act of selling prescription drugs for money distinguishes the fourth degree crime from the disorderly persons offense).
Possible Defense to a Distribution Charge. It is possible to have your case dismissed outright (if charged for anything other than a second degree offense) if you simply gave some of your medication to a friend for their personal use. Specifically, you would need to demonstrate that: (i) the conduct involved no more than six dosage units distributed within a 24-hour period; (ii) the drug was lawfully prescribed to you; and (iii) you gave it to someone solely for his or her personal use.
Diversion of a Prescription Drug Distribution Offense. There are two diversion programs that allow an individual to avoid prosecution for distributing, selling or possession with intent to distribute a prescription drug. Both programs are restricted to first time offenders. A third degree crime or fourth degree crime for distribution of prescription pills or medication can be diverted through Pretrial Intervention. A disorderly persons offense is eligible for diversion through Conditional Discharge.
Ewing Distribution of a Prescription Legend Drug Lawyer
The rise in prescription drug distribution and abuse means heightened enforcement and stiffer penalties. Obtaining a lawyer with the expertise in prescription drug distribution cases is vital to your defense. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, many of who are former prosecutors, have the background to provide you the best defense against any prescription drug distribution offense or possession with intent to distribute charge. With multiple offices in Mercer County, our lawyers are well positioned to serve the entire county include those arrested in Robbinsville, East Windsor, Hopewell Township, West Windsor and Hightstown. Call today at 609-683-8102 for a free consultation with an attorney who can help.
We serve clients throughout Mercer County, New Jersey — including Trenton, Hamilton, Princeton Borough, West Windsor, East Windsor, Lawrence Township, Robbinsville, Hightstown, Princeton Township, Ewing and Hopewell — and surrounding areas, including Hunterdon County and Burlington County.