Police in the Jacksonville area arrested 135 people, mainly in Duval County and Clay County, for either allegedly illegally possessing pills without a prescription or illegally distributing pills, according to an article on www.Jacksonville.com. According to police, the arrests occurred between September and December of this year, and the arrests are only the first phase of a longer investigation into the sale and use of illegal pills in the Jacksonville, Florida area and throughout Florida. The investigation apparently also includes doctors, pharmacists and other medical professionals who are accused of distributing pills unlawfully. Approximately 12,000 pills were seized in the latest operation, and police indicate there is more to come.
We have seen pain clinics pop up all over Florida in the last couple of years, and we represent a variety of such people from owners of pain clinics to people accused of illegally possessing various pain pills. Many of the people involved with pain clinics and other medical providers provide services to people who have chronic pain and are in need of medical services but may not have insurance or the funds to avail themselves of other medical providers. State and federal authorities have been cracking down on these pain clinics and allege that some of them are illegally dispensing pain pills in large quantities and those pills are being re-sold on the street at a significant profit. While there may be some people who are abusing the system and re-selling pain pills, there are also medical providers who are offering a valuable service to people in need of medical care for chronic pain who have no other way to get relief. In situations such as these, we see law enforcement cast a wide net that certainly catches people illegally distributing and using illegal drugs but also people who are providing a valuable and legitimate business and medical service.
In this case, it appears that the police in the Jacksonville area are determined to make a lot of arrests for alleged illegal pill-related crimes as this is just the first phase of the investigation. The concern, as always, is that honest and legitimate people involved in the business of pain management will get caught up in the massive investigation. In those cases, it is important that their rights are protected and the police and government are challenged to prove that illegal activity actually took place.