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Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud

As prescription drug abuse has grown to become a major problem in the United States, the Federal Government has taken increasing steps to crack down on how certain controlled substances are administered and obtained. Federal agencies will often work in conjunction with local law enforcement to investigate and then prosecute people who illegally obtain and distribute prescription drugs.

Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud is prohibited under Florida State Statute 893.13. When the Federal Government becomes involved in an alleged prescription drug distribution case, alleged offenders can also face federal charges of obtaining controlled substances by fraud. Federal charges carry steep penalties that can include not only prison sentences, but as well hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines.

Lawyer for Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud in St. Petersburg, FL

Melinda Morris is an experienced criminal defense attorney in St. Petersburg who represents clients throughout Pinellas County, Manatee County, Pasco County, Sarasota County, and Hillsborough County. Call (727) 592-5885 to receive a complete evaluation of your case during a free, confidential consultation.

Overview of Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud Crimes in Florida

Federal Charges for Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud in Pinellas County

Title 21 U.S. Code § 843(a)(3) makes it unlawful for any person to acquire or obtain possession of a controlled substance by misrepresentation, fraud, forgery, deception, or subterfuge. Some of the types of prescription drugs that are commonly associated with this type of criminal charge include, but are not limited to:

  • Adderall (Amphatamine salts Levoamphetamine and Dextroamphetamine);
  • Codeine;
  • Darvocet (Propoxyphene and Acetaminophen);
  • Demerol (Meperidine);
  • Dilaudid (Hydromorphone);
  • Dolophine (Methadone);
  • Lorcet (Hydrocodone Bitartrate and Acetaminophen);
  • Morphine;
  • OxyContin (Oxycodone);
  • Percocet (Oxycodone and Acetaminophen);
  • Ritalin (Methylphenidate);
  • Soma (Carisoprodol); and
  • Vicodin (Hydrocodone Bitartrate and Acetaminophen);

Federal Penalties for Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud in in St. Petersburg

The possible consequences of a federal conviction for obtaining a controlled substance by fraud can be severe. Possible penalties depend on whether an alleged offender has been previously convicted of this offense.

Under federal law, an alleged offender can be sentenced to the following:

  • First Conviction — Up to four years in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000; or
  • Second or Subsequent Conviction — Up to eight years in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000.

It is important to note that people charged with allegedly obtaining a controlled substance by fraud often face additional federal charges. Some of the other types of crimes people may be accused of can include conspiracy to distribute, drug trafficking, and/or attempted use of a forged prescription.

Florida Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud Resources

Informational Brochures | A Pharmacist’s Guide to Prescription Fraud — View a brochure from the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) discussing prescription fraud. The brochure targeting pharmacists covers prevention techniques, proper controls, and the responsibilities of health care professionals. You can also learn more about types of fraudulent prescriptions and characteristics of forged prescriptions.

Fighting Prescription Drug Abuse with Federal and State Law — The AMA Journal of Ethics is the American Medical Association’s MEDLINE-indexed ethics publication that “explores the ethical issues and challenges that students, residents, and other physicians are likely to confront in their training and daily practice.” View this article that discusses state and federal efforts to regulate prescription drugs. The article covers some of the increased efforts to combat prescription drug abuse.

Morris Law Firm, P.A. | St. Petersburg Obtaining a Controlled Substance by Fraud Attorney

If you were indicted or you believe that you could be under investigation in the Tampa Bay area for allegedly obtaining a controlled substance by fraud, it is in your best interest to immediately retain legal counsel. The Morris Law Firm, P.A. represents clients in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

St. Petersburg criminal defense lawyers Melinda Morris and Seth Shapiro are licensed to practice in Federal Court and aggressively defend clients in Largo, Clearwater, Dunedin, Pinellas Park, and the surrounding areas of Pinellas County. The Morris Law Firm can review your case and help you understand your legal options when you call (727) 592-5885 or submit an online contact form to schedule a free initial consultation.

Why Choose Our Law Firm?

See the Difference Our Service Provides

    Melinda Morris is a former prosecutor and has handled thousands of criminal cases from investigation through sentencing enabling us to identify weaknesses in the State’s case against you.


    We never settle for the easiest outcome or the typical result. We know how to negotiate with the State Attorney and we will work to get you the best possible outcome.


    Melinda Morris has practiced criminal law for over 20 years. Our clients trust advice that comes from experience in nearly every type of criminal case.


    We will know every client’s story because we will take the time to listen and understand. You will work with your attorney one-on-one at every stage of the process.


    You will have the cell phone number of your attorney. Your attorney will directly return your call, email, or text to answer your pressing questions.


    The government is wasting no time in trying to prove your guilt, a proactive defense is imperative. Prompt and decisive action from your defense attorney is of critical importance.

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