Prescription Fraud: What You Need To Know

small picture of attorney bill henry
By: Bill Henry
PublishedAug 21, 2018
1 minute read

Charged with prescription fraud in Colorado? Call (303) 688-0944 or make an appointment online for an assessment with a criminal defense attorney that knows how to defend prescription fraud.

Prescription drugs are the second-most abused category of drugs in the United States following marijuana, according to the 2009 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH): National Findings, SAMHSA (2010). When taken as directed for legitimate medical purposes, prescription drugs are safe and effective. However, they are just as dangerous and deadly as illegal drugs when used for nonmedical reasons. Prescription drugs have great potential for relieving suffering, but also potential for abuse. Any policy in this area must strike a balance between maximizing legitimate access and use of these medications while minimizing their diversion, misuse and abuse.

The most commonly misused prescription drugs

Commonly misused prescription drugs fall into three classes:

  • Opioids. Opioids include oxycodone (Percocet, Tylox, OxyContin), hydrocodone (Vicodin, Lortab), and methadone (Dolophine)
  • Depressants. Central nervous system (CNS) depressants include butalbital (Fiorinal/Fioricet), diazepam (Valium) and alprazolam (Xanax)
  • Stimulants. Stimulants include methylphenidate (Ritalin) and amphetamine/dextroamphetamine (Adderall)
    *All brand names and trademarks are properties of their respective holders.

All of the above is taken from a fact sheet published by the Office of National Drug Control Policy.

Prescription drug fraud is a crime

Whether you have become dependent on a drug prescribed to you by your physician, or you have been caught up in the growing problem of recreational abuse of prescription drugs, obtaining the drug illegitimately can be a crime.

It is a class 6 felony to obtain a controlled substance:

  1. by fraud, deceit, misrepresentation or subterfuge, or
  2. by the forgery or alteration of a prescription, or
  3. by concealment of a material fact, or
  4. by the use of a false name or the giving of a false address, or
  5. by presenting false or forged prescription to be filled.

A class 6 felony carries a sentence in the presumptive range of 12 months to 18 months in prison, and a possible fine of $1,000 to $100,000.

The bottom line for prescription fraud in Colorado 

If you’ve been charged with prescription fraud, don’t delay in contacting a criminal defense attorney. Your health and possible criminal liability are too important to ignore. Having become addicted to prescription drugs may be embarrassing, but you are not alone. Criminal charges can lead you to the road to recovery. Let us help resolve your charges while you take that first step.

If you live in Denver, Littleton or Castle Rock, and someone in your family has been charged with prescription fraud, contact our criminal defense lawyers at 303-688-0944 immediately.


More Than Just Lawyers. Lawyers for Your Life.

Learn more about our law firm’s philosophy and values.