What Is Prescription Fraud in Texas?

In this article, we will delve into the legal definition of prescription drug fraud, its various forms, and the consequences of this offense. It is important to note that prescription drugs are considered controlled substances, which we will also discuss in further detail.

What Constitutes Prescription Fraud in Texas?

Prescription drug fraud is defined as the act of obtaining prescription medications through fraudulent means, such as forging or altering prescriptions, impersonating medical professionals, or using stolen prescription pads. It is considered an illegal activity because it contributes to the abuse of potentially addictive and dangerous medication, putting the health and safety of individuals and communities at risk.

Examples of Prescription Drug Fraud Crimes

There are several ways in which prescription drug fraud is committed, including:

  • Doctor shopping. Visiting multiple doctors to obtain multiple prescriptions for the same medication.

  • Forgery. Altering an existing prescription or creating a fake prescription to obtain medication.

  • Impersonation. Posing as a doctor or other medical professional to call in or write a prescription.

  • Theft. Stealing prescription pads or medication from healthcare facilities or pharmacies.

What Is the Penalty for Prescription Drug Fraud?

Prescription drug fraud can be charged as a second- or third-degree felony. If the drug fraud involves a Penalty Group 1 controlled substance, a person can be charged with a second-degree felony, which is punishable by up to $10,000 in fines and imprisonment for two to 20 years.

If the drug fraud involves a Penalty Group 3 controlled substance, a person can be charged with a third-degree felony, which is also punishable by a fine of up to $10,000 and imprisonment for two to 20 years.

It is also important to note that a person can face other drug-related charges if they are believed to have committed prescription drug fraud, and these charges carry their own penalties. Such charges include:

  • Possession of a controlled substance

  • Drug trafficking

Apart from legal penalties, those convicted of prescription drug fraud often face significant personal consequences. A criminal record can lead to social isolation as friends and family members distance themselves from the offender. Moreover, a conviction can make it difficult to find employment or housing, as many employers and landlords conduct background checks on applicants.

Controlled Substances | Penalty Group 3 Texas

Under Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.002, a controlled substance refers to a drug, dilutant, adulterant, or other substance included in Penalty Group 1, 1-A, 1-B, 2, 3, or 4 or Schedules I through V. There are many medications, including depressants and stimulants that are considered Penalty Group 3 substances, including:

  • Ritalin

  • Testosterone

  • Valium

  • Diazepam

  • Codeine (less than 90 mg per dose)

  • Xanax

  • Zolpidem

  • HGH (Human Growth Hormone)

  • Lorazepam

  • Clonazepam

  • Hydrocodone (less than 15 mg per dose or less than 300 mg)

  • Peyote

Controlled Substances | Penalty Group 1 Texas

Many prescription drugs are considered Penalty Group 1 substances, including:

  • Heroine

  • Cocaine

  • GHB

  • Opium

  • Crack

  • Special K (Ketamine)

  • Methadone

  • Methamphetamine

  • Hydrocodone (over 300 grams)

  • Vicodin

Schedule a Consultation Today

Prescription drug fraud is a serious offense in Texas that carries severe legal and personal consequences. If you or a loved one have been arrested or charged with prescription drug fraud or a related drug offense, the attorneys at The Clark Law Firm are here and equipped to help.

With over 35 years of experience, we are committed to providing our clients with personalized and transparent legal counsel. Attorney Clark is a former prosecutor, which also allows our team to better develop a case strategy for our clients and gives us an advantage in the courtroom.

Toschedule an initial consultation, call (817) 435-4970. You don’t have to face these charges alone.


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