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Having painkillers without prescriptions can have harsh penalties

| Jan 25, 2021 | Drug Crimes |

There are many different illnesses and injuries that people in Houston suffer during their lives. Also, over time the body can simply break down. When people are dealing with these issues, it can be very painful. When they go to the doctor to treat the ailments often they may also receive a prescription for painkillers to make life more comfortable for them. Many of these painkillers, such as oxycodone, contain opioids which are very effective.

While very effective at controlling pain, they can also be addictive. Sometimes people may continue to use them after the prescription is no longer valid and they are unable to obtain another prescription. Taking the drugs is perfectly legal while people have valid prescriptions, but using them when they do not have a prescription can lead to criminal drug charges and potentially serious consequences if they are convicted of the crime.

Potential penalties for opioid possession

The severity of the penalty depends on the amount that people are caught possessing.

  • Less than a gram is a state jail felony This could result in jail time between 180 days and two years as well as a fine up to $10,000.
  • Between one and four grams is a third-degree felony. People could result in a jail sentence between two years and ten years and a fine up to $10,000.
  • Between four grams and 200 grams is a second-degree felony, which may result in a jail sentence between two and 20 years in addition to a fine of up to $10,000.
  • Between 200 grams and 400 grams is a first-degree felony, which could result in anywhere from five years to life in prison along with up to a $10,000 fine.
  • Over 400 grams could result in at least 10 years in jail and up to life in prison and a $100,000 fine.

There are many people in Texas who may possess painkillers without a prescription. This can lead to very serious consequences if people are convicted of the crimes. However, in order to be convicted people it must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt that the crime was committed. There are also potential defenses available. Many of the defenses start with whether the police legally stopped or searched the person. Experienced attorneys understand the potential defenses and may be able to protect one’s rights.