Some people don’t think twice about giving their friend a pain pill when they have a headache, or an anxiety pill when they’re facing a tough situation. Or they might have some extras that they didn’t take and want to make a few bucks off them. Federal law prohibits giving or selling prescription drugs to anyone without a license. If you are caught trading or selling prescription medications, it’s important to seek legal help immediately.
Giving vs. Selling
A common misconception is that if you’re not “selling” the prescription medication for cash, you’re not breaking the law. However, the law covers giving prescription pills with nothing in return and trading them for something else. If you give someone a medication, or you trade medication for something else that isn’t money, you’re still violating federal law. This is particularly true of prescription medications that are considered controlled substances, including opiates, benzodiazepines, amphetamines, and more.
The Burden of Proof Is On the Prosecution
In a case like this, the burden of proof lies on the prosecution. However, they only need to prove that the defendant knowingly provided prescription medication to a person without a valid prescription. In cases where medical professionals are charged with drug crimes, it must be proven that the defendant knowingly wrote or filled false prescriptions.
Most of the time, trading or giving away prescription drugs is treated as a sale. Penalties for the illegal sale of prescription drugs are much harsher than possessing medications without a valid prescription. The penalties you face if convicted of this crime are harsh. They include but are not limited to jail time, hefty fines and restitution, community service, probation, mandatory drug and/or alcohol counseling, and a permanent criminal record.
How to Defend Yourself Against Criminal Drug Charges
The most important thing to do after an arrest for any crime is to call an attorney. This is particularly true for drug crimes when how evidence came to be in the possession of the police is crucial. At the Law Offices of Thomas Kokonowski, Esq., we have the skills and resources to help defend you against charges of selling or trading prescription medications. Don’t wait to protect your rights under the law. Get the help you need today by calling our office at (413) 585-9200 or (413) 549-0022.