Over the past ten years, use of dangerous prescription opiates such as Oxycodone, Vicodin, Percocet, etc. have been on the rise in Hackensack and throughout New Jersey. Heroin used to be the preferred choice for opiate users in years past. However, in today’s society, prescription opiates have become increasingly prevalent, probably due to the feeling of justification that is typically associated with taking a prescription medication, like Vicodin, rather than a “street drug” like heroin or cocaine. This is because it is in fact legal to obtain a prescription for a powerful opiate via a physician, so it can feel less “dangerous” to use these drugs. Nevertheless, it is important to understand that the purchase, possession and abuse of opiates without a valid prescription is a crime and carries significant potential penalties in New Jersey. Certain prescription opiates are Schedule II controlled substances under N.J.S.A.24:21-6 (i.e. the Controlled Substances Act). Due to the serious risk of death and addiction for people who use opiates without a prescription, the penalties for illegally possessing a prescription opiate in New Jersey can be quite severe. For example, if you are found in possession of a schedule I or schedule II narcotic, such as an opiate, you could be looking at serious criminal charges.
If you were arrested for possession, transportation, or sales of such opiates, you need an experienced opiate defense lawyer to fight for your rights. Hackensack opioid possession and distribution defense lawyer Adam M. Lustberg has over a decade of experience representing individuals accused of drug crimes. Mr. Lustberg will leave no stone unturned while defending you in your case. Depending on your situation, Mr. Lustberg will advise you as to the strength of the prosecutor’s case against you and the viability of particular defenses.
Contact The Lustberg Law Offices at (201) 880-5311 for a no-cost, confidential consultation to discuss your situation and develop an effective plan to protect your rights.
Committed to providing clients with individual attention and crafting personalized defense strategies based on the facts of the case.
Opioids have the ability to produce a morphine-like effect on your body and are usually prescribed to relieve bodily pain. The relief of pain can generate euphoric experience, which is often attributed for the attraction by recreational users. Types of opioids include, but are not limited to:
In Hackensack and elsewhere in New Jersey, it is against the law to possess opiates for personal use without a valid prescription. The penalties for being in possession of an opiate often depends on the type and amount of the opiate involved in the alleged violation. Possession convictions can incur large monetary fines and significant periods of incarceration. This is why it makes sense to contact Hackensack criminal defense lawyer Adam M. Lustberg. He can review the facts of your case, explain your options, and advise you of the viability of specific defenses for your particular case.
Common Forms of Opioid Violations Include:
Contact The Lustberg Law Offices at (201) 880-5311 today to learn more.
Possession of a controlled substance charges in Hackensack, and elsewhere in NJ, are graded according to a specific, statutory schedule. For example, possession of a substance such as cocaine, heroin, ecstasy, oxycontin, etc. is a third-degree felony, which carries a potential prison term between three and five years. It also often results in monetary fine up to $35,000 fine. However, if this if your first offense, there is a presumption of non-imprisonment. Though, all drug charges in New Jersey carry a mandatory minimum six-month suspension of your driving privileges, regardless of whether drugs were found in your vehicle or not.
In 2017, the Governor of New Jersey signed a bill into law which limited most initial prescriptions of pain-killing opioids like Vicodin to five days. This law is generally considered to be the strictest in the United States. This indicates how serious New Jersey lawmakers consider opioid abuse to be. This 2017 law applies to improper use, possession and distribution of opioids. Opioid-related charges and penalties in NJ typically include:
If you were charged with an opioid-related offense, you should know that there are several steps to the criminal process in NJ. An arrest or indictment does not automatically end in a guilty verdict. However, given the penalties and the consequences of an opioid-related offense on your record, conviction should be avoided at all costs.
With legal representation by Hackensack opioid defense attorney Adam M. Lustberg, you can be rest assured that all defenses will be explored in an effort to ensure you avoid harsh penalties or even a finding of guilt in an opioid possession, distribution or fraudulent prescription case.
To schedule a consultation, call Lustberg Law Offices today (201) 880-5311.
We have years of experience in courts through NJ and NY and a proven track record of success in criminal cases.
The most common defense against charges of possession or distribution of opioids is that the person did not intend to sell the drugs to make a profit. The strength of this argument will depend on the number of opioids you have in your possession. An experienced divorce attorney may also be able to challenge the legality of the search and seizure which led to the discovery and possession of opioids, as well as the arrest process, mistakes in the “line up” that led you to identification, and the quality of the evidence obtained by the prosecution.
Other than possession and sale/distribution of opioids, New Jersey could also be charged with other related offenses. These include:
Medication in the Wrong Container. N.J.S.A. SS 2C:35-24 states that it is a disorderly act to possess prescription medication in any other container than the original. An exception is made for people who have no more than 10 days’ supply of the medication and can provide police with the name of the doctor or pharmacist who prescribed the medication. A violation of this statute can result in up to 6 months imprisonment, a permanent criminal history, and a $1,000 fine. These penalties would be in addition any other possible charges.
Obtained a prescription by fraud or forgery. N.J.S.A. 2C:35-13 outlines the possible charges for illegally obtaining or trying to obtain prescriptions. Forging prescriptions (on a prescription pad, via computer), changing the drug quantity on prescriptions, impersonating doctors to call in prescriptions and prescribing drugs for a illegitimate reason are all examples. Violation of this statute is a third-degree offense that can lead to up to five years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $100,000. This includes a permanent criminal record, as well as penalties for other related offenses.
A. According to N.J.S.A. § 2C:35-24, you could actually be charged with a disorderly persons offense in NJ if you don’t keep prescription medication within the original container. The only caveat is that if you have no more than a ten-day supply of the medication and you are able to provide a police officer the name and address of the pharmacist or doctor that prescribed you the medication. Violating this statute will result in a disorderly persons offense, a permanent criminal record, up to $1,000.00 in fines and six months in county jail.
A. If you acquire a prescription for an opioid through fraudulent means, you could be charged with a third-degree crime under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-13. The penalties for committing such an offense are severe including a fine of up to $50,000 and 3-5 years in prison, and your license can be suspended for a minimum of 6 months. In addition to that you can also be charged and prosecuted for a theft crime.
Due the seriousness of the penalties associated with an opioid possession or distribution conviction, it would be in your best interest to retain The Lustberg Law Offices sooner rather than later. If you need to make an appearance in a criminal court, Mr. Lustberg will be able to offer you quality representation during this critical time.