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Prescription Drug Possession in Arizona

The State of Arizona prohibits the possession and/or the use of unauthorized prescription medications. Although certain stipulations may apply in terms of circumstance, malicious intent becomes a huge factor when determining penalties therein and punishments thereafter. While the legal terminology may become a little confusing, the following information is broken down into simpler terms

According to Section 13 of the Arizona Revised Statutes (ARS), manufacturing and/or or distributing prescription drugs without a license to do so will result in the commission of a felony, which is a little different than possessing small amounts for personal use. Although the manufacture and solicitation of illicit substances can render more serious charges, using someone else’s prescription can still cause some legal problems and perpetual headaches.

For example, the illegal possession of the lesser opiates such as Vicodin or Oxycontin in smaller amounts will result in being arrested, and the accused will be charged with felony drug possession. Often times these felony charges are reduced to misdemeanors, yet circumstance may also be a key factor. Either way, a conviction will be stamped on the individual’s record and the following penalties will likely ensue: jail time, probation, drug diversion, and a healthy fine as well. The maximum sentence, in worst-case scenarios, is up to 3-¾ years in prison.

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Possession with the intent to sell illicit prescription drugs will bring harsher penalties if convicted, which is when the statutory threshold comes into play. Determining the difference between simple possession and illegal distribution is usually done by weight, but also by dosages and packaging. Because ARS 13-3407 does not stipulate the exact threshold amount for the drugs in question, local law enforcement and the court system combined will weigh the evidence and level the appropriate charges.

The ramifications of selling prescription drugs in Arizona without authorization can extend well beyond state laws. Interstate trafficking can also be attached to a list of violations that are out of the state’s jurisdiction. Even though these local laws are designed to mirror the proscriptions imposed by the DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency), the possibility of being locked up in a federal prison still exists. No matter the case, finding legal counsel isn’t just an option, but a downright necessity.

If you are facing a charge of illegal Possession of Prescription Drugs in Arizona, please give our office a call at (602) 307-0808. Call to schedule your free consultation with a drug defense attorney. If you would like to reach us by email, click here.

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