While many of the drug arrests that occur in the El Paso involve street drugs such as heroin, cocaine or marijuana, these are not the only drugs that an arrest could be connected to. In fact, recently law enforcement in El Paso County arrested nearly three dozen individuals for offenses related to prescription fraud. The arrests were the result of an investigation that lasted over two years, commencing in June 2011. The investigation was done in conjunction with multiple other state and federal agencies.
The 33 individuals who were arrested, who are between the ages of 21 and 68, are accused of obtaining the following drugs in a fraudulent manner:
According to law enforcement, the prescription drugs were obtained a variety of ways including “doctor shopping”, stealing prescriptions, fake prescriptions and altering prescriptions. The investigation into the manner was the result of tips pharmacists provided.
In addition to the drug charges some individuals also were charged with engaging in organized criminal activity. A district attorney for the El Paso County District Attorney’s Office indicated that the charges the arrested individuals face could result in a fine of up to $10,000 and 20 years in prison.
Clearly these are circumstances that no one wants to have to face. The best chance someone has of avoiding them is to mount an aggressive defense. Most find the most effective way of doing this is to work with a criminal defense lawyer who has handled similar cases in the past.
Source: El Paso Times, “More than 30 arrested in El Paso County prescription drug fraud case,” Adriana M. Chávez, Sept. 18, 2013