Prescription forgery, or obtaining controlled dangerous substances by forgery, is a crime that grows right out of the abuse of prescription drugs, especially opioid painkillers.
While there are other types of prescription drugs that are in high demand on the black market in Claremore, Oklahoma, opioids seem to be one of the most prevalent kinds of medications that people obtain by forgery.
Prescription is a serious matter in Oklahoma. Here are some things you might want to know about how this crime is handled in Oklahoma.
What are Controlled Dangerous Substances?
In Oklahoma, it is illegal for a person to knowingly or intentionally possess a controlled dangerous substance (drug) unless that substance was obtained directly or by a valid prescription or order from a practitioner. If you aren’t in possession of it legally from a doctor or pharmacist, you could be in trouble.
Oklahoma classifies all controlled dangerous substances (drugs), including prescription medications, according to schedules. Prescription pain medications like Oxycontin, Percocet, and Vicodin, are classified as Schedule II and III substances. Okla. Stat. tit. 63 §§ 2-204 et seq.
How Does This Crime Occur?
It is a felony in Oklahoma for a person to obtain a prescription substance by fraud, forgery, deceit, misrepresentation, concealment of a material fact, use of a false name or address, the creation or possession of a counterfeit or invalid prescription form, or by failing to disclose that a similar prescription had been filled within the last 30 days. Okla. Stat. tit. 63 § 2-407
Prescription forgery can occur in a number of different ways, but the most common is to steal a prescription pad and forge a doctor’s signature or change the date, the number of pills prescribed, or the like on a prescription.
The law makes it illegal to alter, add information to, or change an existing prescription. This includes changing the pill amount or changing the name of the prescription recipient. It is also against the law to give a forged prescription to a pharmacist.
Finally, it is illegal to even attempt to obtain these drugs by forgery. You can be prosecuted for the mere attempt.
Defenses to Prescription Forgery
There are defenses that may be available to you depending on the circumstances. Some of the most common involve mistaken identity (you are not the person who actually forged the prescription or caused it to be forged) and there is no actual prescription forgery (the crime did not occur).
In addition, your attorney can help you work toward a plea deal or dismissal if the situation is appropriate. Sometimes, the prosecution will pursue a case even when there is actually insufficient evidence to get a conviction.
Prescription is a felony in Oklahoma and is punishable by imprisonment for up to 10 years, a fine of up to $10,000, or both for a first conviction.
A second or subsequent offense is punishable by 4 to 20 years in prison, a fine of up to $20,000, or both. In addition, a subsequent conviction is not subject to statutory provisions for suspended sentences, deferred sentences, or probation.
If you or a loved one are facing charges for obtaining a controlled dangerous substance by forgery, it is critical that you get the help you need.
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