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Union County NJ Criminal Defense Lawyers

Over 200 Years Combined Experience

Former County & Municipal Prosecutors

Westfield Prescription Drug Attorney

Prescription Drug Possession in Westfield New Jersey

The opioid prescription drug crisis is well publicized and even touches the most affluent municipalities like Westfield New Jersey.  With the proliferation of highly addictive prescription drugs meant to address pain relief and depression, including Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, Xanax and Vicodin, misuse of this form of controlled dangerous substance (“CDS”) has skyrocketed. The end result is significantly more individuals charged with possession, distribution, forgery and obtaining CDS by fraud in Union County and elsewhere in New Jersey. If you were arrested for a prescription drug offense in Westfield, the lawyers at our firm are prepared to undertake all efforts to escape a conviction on your behalf. We have over 100 years of experience, including time employed as prosecutors, to obtain the outcome you need in your case. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall are astute litigators that are highly skilled in defending prescription medication charges. We have been particularly successful in getting cases downgraded and dismissed when our clients are faced with a prescription drug offense like possession. Contact our office to speak to an attorney today. A lawyer is available 24/7 for free consultation by calling 908-272-1700.

Westfield Prescription Drug Offense

It is illegal, under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5(e), for a person to be in possession of prescription medication that was not prescribed to him or her. Note that a “prescription drug” is any drug dispensed through a prescription provided by a licensed physician, veterinarian, or dentist.

Elements of Prescription Drug Possession. To be convicted of illegally possessing a prescription drug, the prosecution must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the following elements: (1) the accused possessed a prescription legend drug; (2) knowingly; and (3) he/she lacked a prescription for the CDS.

Penalty for Prescription Drug Possession. Possession of 5 or more prescription pills is a fourth-degree crime, which could result in up to 18 months in jail, and a fine of up to $10,000. Possession of 4 or fewer prescription pills is a disorderly person offense, which could result in up to 6 months in jail and a fine up to $1,000.

Defenses to Prescription Drug Possession. It is important to note that if a friend gives you a few pills for your own use, it is not a crime. Also, even though it is illegal to keep prescription medication in the wrong bottle (see N.J.S.A. 2C:35-24), it is legal to take a few pills in a different container if you were going on a short trip. A Marshall Firm attorney will be sure to use those defenses should that be the circumstances of your case.

The consequences are much more significant when an individual sells, distributes or possesses a prescription legend drug with intent to distribute. Distribution of four or fewer pills or dosage units is a fourth degree crime. At least 5 dosage units but less than 100 is a third degree crime and selling 100 or more is a second degree crime.

Westfield NJ Prescription Drug Defense Lawyer

Abuse of Vicodin, Percocet, OxyContin, Demerol, Valium, Xanax, and other prescription medication is on the rise. In fact, it has recently been identified as a public health crisis in New Jersey. So, if you are facing a charge for illegal possession of prescription medication in Westfield or another Union County municipality, you certainly are not alone. Our attorneys are sensitive to the unique issues you are facing given our vast experience in handling prescription CDS charges. This allows the lawyers at the Marshall Law Firm to eliminate much of the confusion, intimidation and other concerns that often arise in these cases. To take advantage of a free review of your matter by a skilled defense lawyer, call us at 908-272-1700. An attorney with the knowledge and expertise to help you is available immediately.