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Conway Criminal Law Blog

Forged prescriptions and fraud charges

We often rely on prescription medications to help us recover from a serious illness or to manage chronic pain. Some prescription medications have a potential for abuse and a person addicted to these drugs may be desperate enough to forge a prescription or perform some other fraudulent act to obtain more of the drug. Doing so, however, has significant penalties.

Obtaining drugs by fraud

Obtaining a drug by fraud is a crime that can range from a Class B Misdemeanor to a Class F Felony. It is important to note that a person cannot be convicted under this law unless there is clear and convincing evidence that the only way that they could have obtained the drug was by fraud.

There are two general elements to the crime. The first is that the accused tried to get a controlled substance or other prescription drug. Second, the accused must obtain the drug by fraud or misrepresentation, by forging a prescription or by lying about their name or address or otherwise concealing a material fact.

Penalties for obtaining drugs by fraud

The penalties for obtaining drugs by fraud depend on whether it is a first offense or a second or subsequent offense. If it is a first offense, the accused could face a $500 fine, up to two years in prison or both. If it is a second or subsequent offense, the accused could face a $2,000 fine, a prison sentence of up to five years or both.

Protect your rights

People can become addicted to prescription drugs and sometimes this addiction can lead to acts of desperation. It is illegal to obtain prescription drugs by fraud in South Carolina. If you are facing drug charges you will want to make sure you understand the elements of the crime you are facing and the potential penalties so you can make appropriate decisions in your defense.