Authorities across the country have started to treat the prevalence of prescription drugs without the proper prescription as an epidemic, and a question that I get all the time is “How does the State of California treat people who are accused of illegally possessing otherwise perfectly legal drugs like Oxycontin, Vicodin, Adderall, Ritalin.”
Prescription Drug Offenses
These things come up all the time now, and people really assume that they’re going to be treated differently than they would be if they were just a regular sort of illegal drug like heroin or methamphetamine. But the fact is the statutes in the State of California and prosecutors treat prescription drug abuse almost exactly the same way that they would treat illegal drugs of any other sort.
If you’re someone who has a prescription for Vicodin or Oxycontin, and then the prescription runs out. You give it to somebody else, and that person didn’t have a valid prescription in the first place, that’s technically going to be treated as distribution of an illegal drug much the same way somebody selling drugs on the corner would be.
Possession without a Prescription
If you’re just possessing Ritalin or Adderall without a prescription, you’re going to be potentially be accused of a misdemeanor.
And again, if the authorities think that they have evidence that you are either even just giving it away, furnishing it, or selling it, or trading a prescription narcotic without a prescription to somebody else, they’re going to treat you as a felon, as a drug dealer. In the same way that somebody who is dealing meth or dealing cocaine would be treated in the state of California.
Why do you need a Criminal Defense Attorney?
For that reason it’s very important to take these cases seriously. A lot of times people think “It’s just a high school kid. The high school kid traded Adderall with his friends for rides home from school.” Well, that high school kid can be brought to juvenile delinquency court and treated as a drug dealer. Adults much the same thing. So it’s very important to take this seriously.
If you or a loved one is dealing with this issue, understand that we have the experience and skill necessary to make sure that your rights are protected and to try to help defend you to the best ability of the Constitution. Please feel free to give us a call. We always offer free consultations, and we’re happy to talk to you about what we can do to help.