Camden County NJ Vicodin Possession and Distribution Lawyer
Prescription Drug Charges Attorney with Offices in Collingswood, New Jersey
Vicodin is generally prescribed as a pain reliever as it’s euphoric effects are six to eight times as strong as codeine. It is given to patients many times after surgery because of its ability to prevent a person’s body from perceiving pain. As a result, many patients find themselves addicted to the drug after their prescription has run out. In fact, Vicodin is considered among the most popular gateway drugs today because of its availability and likelihood of addiction. As a result, the prosecution will often seek the harshest penalties allowed under the law for possession or distribution of Vicodin.
The attorneys at the Law Offices of Leonard Biddison have had tremendous success handling a huge volume of drug cases for years in Camden County including Runnemede, Somerdale, Gloucester, and Cherry Hill. In fact, one of the members of our criminal defense team is a former county prosecutor in New Jersey who used to prosecute drug charges for the State which means we know what kinds of arguments the prosecution might make. This sort of knowledge and expertise can be extremely valuable in your case. If you have been charged with possession or distribution of Vicodin, having an attorney who knows what it takes to potentially beat the charges against you is imperative. Call the Law Offices of Leonard Biddison at 877-450-8301 anytime for a free initial consultation.
New Jersey Possession and Distribution of Vicodin Statute: N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5
Vicodin’s main ingredient, hydrocodone, works by blocking certain nerve receptors in the brain that allow a person to feel pain. Hydrocodone is considered an opioid narcotic, analgesic (pain-reliever) and a cough suppressant, much like codeine.
The law for possession and distribution of Vicodin is explained under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5. Since it is either a schedule II or III drug (depending on the dosage), it is illegal to carry it unless it has been prescribed by a doctor and illegal to distribute unless you are licensed to do so. As the statute explains below, the degree you are charged with is based on the number of pills in question.
First Degree: Vicodin Possession with Intent to Distribute, Distribution – Since Vicodin is such a highly addictive drug, a person can be charged with possession with intent to distribute it in the first degree. It is first degree if the person is caught selling at least 100 pills. A conviction for this offense can result in 10 to 20 years in New Jersey State Prison.
Second Degree: Vicodin Possession, Possession with Intent to Distribute, Distribution – You will be charged in the second degree if you are found with 100 or more pills and you have them for financial gain. Penalties can include 5 to 10 years in New Jersey State Prison with a presumption of incarceration, and a fine of up to $300,000.
Third Degree: Vicodin Possession, Possession with Intent to Distribute, Distribution – If you arrested with between 5 and 99 pills, you will be charged with this offense in the third degree. Penalties for this include 3 to 5 years in New Jersey State Prison and a fine of up to $200,000.
Fourth Degree: Vicodin Possession, Possession with Intent to Distribute, Distribution – If you are found with less than 5 pills, you will be charged in the fourth degree. Penalties can include up to 18 months in New Jersey State Prison.
Disorderly Persons Offense: Vicodin Possession – Under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-24, possession of less than 5 pills outside of its original bottle, you be charged with a disorderly persons offense. Further, even being under the influence of Vicodin in public can be a disorderly persons offense. Penalties can include up to 6 months in county jail and a $1,000 fine.
Note: According to N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(c), a person can also be charged for not turning over Vicodin to a law enforcement officer. This is a disorderly persons offense punishable by 6 months in county jail and potential drivers license suspension. Many Vicodin related cases get downgraded to this.
Note: There are several defenses to possession and distribution of Vicodin that might be available in your case. For example, if there was a problem with the way the police conducted their search, the entire case against you would have to be thrown out. Further, depending on what degree you have been charged with and whether you have a prior record, you might be eligible for a probationary sentence such as the Pre-Trial Intervention Program. Completion of this program will result in the charges being dropped against you.
Contact a Somerdale NJ Vicodin Charges Lawyer for a Free Consultation
The criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Leonard Biddison are always available to speak with you about your case and begin to formulate an aggressive strategy to defend you against a vicodin possession or distribution charge. Our criminal defense team understands the details of the law in New Jersey and we will use this knowledge to help you best defend against these charges. Call us today at 877-450-8301 for a free initial consultation about your case.