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Possession of Prescription Drugs

Jackson NJ Prescription Drug Possession Lawyers

Call our criminal defense firm, Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, to speak to a former prosecutor regarding your arrest or charge for possessing a prescription drug like Oxycontin, Roxycontin, or Xanax. Initial consultations are complimentary and we have over 100 years of collective experience defending prescription drug possession cases throughout Ocean County, including the Superior Court in Toms River NJ. If you were arrested in Toms River, Jackson, Berkeley, Lacey, Brick or another town for possession of Suboxone, Oxycodone or another prescription drug, contact our Toms River Office at (732) 286-6500 to speak to a lawyer immediately.

Under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(e)(2), it is illegal for someone to “knowingly possess, actually or constructively” a prescription legend drug unless it was properly prescribed by a doctor, physician or other authorized medical practitioner. For purposes of this law, “constructive possession” exists where the accused is aware of the presence of the prescription legend drug and intends to exercise physical control over it, which in most cases means they intend to take the drug. A prescription legend drug is defined under 2C:35-10.5(e) as “any drug which under federal or State law that requires dispensing by prescription or order of a licensed physician, veterinarian, or dentist…”

Typically, though, the drugs that we are concerned with when we talk about N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5(e) are the drugs that we commonly think of as prescription painkillers or anxiety medication, which have been found to have the highest potential for abuse. Specifically, the drugs that are most often associated with this crime are OxyContin, Vicodin, Percocet, Demerol, Morphine, Xanax, and Diazepam, though there are many other drugs that are made illegal by virtue of their place on the list of prescription legend drugs.

Possession charges, like most other crimes, are based on a grading scale directly related to the quantity of the prescription drug that is found in your possession at the time that you are arrested. A person who is found with four or fewer dosage units of a prescription legend drug, unless of course it has been lawfully prescribed, would be guilty of a disorderly persons charge. This is a misdemeanor offense that would be handled in a municipal court like the one in Jackson, Manchester, Lacey, Brick, Toms River and Berkeley. Although this is not a felony, an individual may be fined up to $1,000 and put in jail for up to six months.

The fines and imprisonment sentences start to become greater when you possess over five dosage units, because the court may determine that you have the intent to distribute. However, assuming that you have five or more dosage units and no intent to distribute, this is a fourth degree felony. Crimes of the fourth degree can lead to a fine of up to $10,000 and up to 18 months in prison. While the conviction also necessarily leads to a criminal record, it is possible to file an application for PTI (Pretrial Intervention) and if granted a criminal record may be avoided.

Several affirmative defenses exist for this offense as well. It is an affirmative defense to the charge if you can produce a valid prescription for the drug. It is an affirmative defense to the charge if you are acting within the scope of your employment as a pharmacist, doctor, dentist, etc. There is also a de minimis affirmative defense if three elements are met: (1) the defendant must show that they unlawfully received no more than six dosage units within a 24 hour period, (2) the prescription legend drug must have been lawfully prescribed to the person from whom it was received and (3) the defendant must have possessed the substance solely for personal use.

Brick Township NJ Prescription Possession Defense Attorney

The use of all of these defenses requires someone with in depth knowledge about the charges. At Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, our lawyers have over 100 years of collective experience defending against possession of prescription drug charges in Ocean County including in Seaside Heights, Point Pleasant Beach, Lakewood, Manchester and Stafford. So if you or someone you know has had the misfortune to be charged with this offense, please do not hesitate to contact one of our offices today for a free consultation with an experienced attorney about the particulars of your case. A lawyer on our defense team can be reached 24/7 at (732) 286-6500.

Contact Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, 10 Allen St #2D Toms River, NJ, if you were charged with possession of prescription drugs in Toms River, Berkeley, Jackson, Lacey, Manchester, Brick Seaside Heights, Point Pleasant Beach, Lakewood, Manchester, Stafford or another municipality in Ocean County.

What Clients Say About Our Ocean County Criminal Defense Attorneys
Exemplary attorneys. I hired them for a DUI and an expungement. I was happy with the results for both cases. Special thank you to Samera for always answering all of my calls and questions JC
I'm 45 years old and this was my first time ever getting in trouble with the law. I was in need of a lawyer and after careful research, I called John F. Marshall Attorneys and was introduced to Abe Basch. Abe was professional, supportive and very thorough. I had three charges against me, one civil and two criminal. I was so scared and expressed that to Abe. The first day I had to go to court, I was an absolute nervous wreck but Abe prepped me and kept my anxiety levels down by going over the process of the courts thoroughly with me. He fought to get my charges dismissed and won all three cases (two court appearances). Abe is positive, confident and he ensured I felt the same way. I'd like to say thank you to Abe for working so diligently on my cases to get them dismissed. I feel like a weight has been lifted off my chest! I highly recommend Abe for any charges you may be faced with. Rose C.
I was out of state on a family emergency and I had to retain council asap as a boy friend was sitting in county jail with the new no bail point system and Mr marshal and staff made me feel Soo much better knowing that my detained loved one was in such great hands! He spoke to me as I was outta state kept in touch allowed me to work out payment due to the situation and just all out the difference in my bfs voice alone with all the medical problems and such he was going threw sounded better than he had since the first day he was there and was Soo happy that Mr marshal went that day retained to see him in the jail and have him ready for court which wasn't supposed to be till Friday but again Mr marshall and team got it so we can get him now on wendsday and all I have to say is if your looking for a real down to earth lawyer that will work with you and help in anyway possible and I can't for get the team at the office TONI and everyone else thank you again I'd give 100 stars if I could! Nicole J.
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