Three Jacksonville, Duval County, Florida women were recently arrested for the crime of prescription fraud according to www.Firstcoastnews.com. The three Jacksonville women are alleged to have obtained popular prescription drugs such as Oxycontin, Hydrocodone and Xanax worth over $50,000 illegally. According to a Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office report, the women allegedly used the insurance information of others and forged doctors’ prescriptions to obtain the drugs from CVS Pharmacy. Due to the large quantity of the prescription drugs, Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office officials believed that the prescription drugs were obtained for resale, rather than use.
As discussed previously on this Jacksonville Criminal Lawyer Blog, abuse of prescription drugs is becoming increasingly popular along with corresponding arrests for the crimes of prescription fraud and possession of illegal prescription drugs. This dangerous trend has become particularly more popular among kids.
Illegal use of prescription drugs, such as Oxycontin, in Florida has had serious effects. According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement , through the first half of 2007, the drugs that caused the most deaths to Florida residents were prescription drugs. The Florida death toll from prescription drugs has risen since 2001. However, Florida is one of fifteen states that does not have a system in place to try to track the disbursement of prescription drugs. In addition to what was alleged in this Jacksonville, Florida case, one common way people obtain large quantities of illegal prescription drugs is by what is referred to as “doctor shopping.” This involves taking a prescription to various doctors who are not aware that the person already obtained the prescription drug previously from a separate doctor. Many states have a system in place to monitor when a person submits a prescription and obtains the drugs, but Florida currently does not.
The Florida law prohibiting prescription fraud can be located here. (Florida Statutes § 893.13). It is a third degree felony crime.