In a recent bust, Federal agents arrested several individuals involved in a major prescription drug forgery ring, which sold loritab, oxycodone and oxycontin. The ringleaders in the operation, forged nearly 60 prescriptions and obtained close to 15,000 pain pills.
Prescription drug use has become an epidemic in Utah. In fact, according to a federal study, Utah leads the nation for nonmedical use of prescription drugs. The same study found that 8% of children less than 18 years of age and 13% between the ages of 18 and 25 use prescription drugs for non-medical use. The death rate from prescription drug use is also on the rise in Utah, as it more than doubles the death rate from the use of illegal drugs.
As the demand for prescription drugs has risen, so too has the number of people getting in on the action. It’s become a large underground market and many are profiting very well financially. Loratab sells for around $5 per pill and oxycodone can sell for as much as $30 per pill. This can make the business very appealing, especially for the many people who are unemployed and cannot find jobs.
Simply forging a prescription is a third degree felony, which is punishable with up to 5 years in prison. However, the crime can easily be labeled a first degree felony all depending on whether you intend to distribute it and whether you distribute it to minors or even near the presence of minors. If you have found yourself in handcuffs and charged with a crime relating to illegal or prescription drugs, call a Utah criminal defense attorney who has the knowledge and experience to help convince the judge of your innocence.