Momentum begins to build against pain pill sellers – Part 1

The fastest growing form of addiction in the United States is the illicit use of prescription pill narcotics. The rise in drug crimes associated with the operation of pain management clinics that illegally prescribe and sell prescription pain killers has led to a nationwide crackdown. The epicenter of the nationwide crackdown against prescription drug misuse is Florida. Recently, authorities in Florida have been building cases against doctors and clinics by making undercover drug purchases.

Local police and agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration are focusing their efforts on “pill mills.” Pill mills are cash-only clinics that require a superficial exam before a prescription by a doctor is issued. Once the prescription is issued at the clinic, the patient can get the prescription filled at the clinic’s pharmacy on-site. Since patients can complete the entire prescription process at one location, authorities call the clinics pill mills.

According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health reports around 7 million people age 12 or older abuse prescription drugs regularly. The most popular forms of pain killers that are illicitly used are oxycodone and hydrocodone. The drugs are highly addictive and the popular perception is the drugs are safer and more predictable than drugs bought on the street. The rise in narcotic prescription pain killers can partly be attributed to the increase in safety and effectives of the drugs over the last three decades. Illicit use has followed the increase in the proper use of the drugs.

Broward County, Florida where Fort Lauderdale is located is the largest geographic distributor of prescription painkillers. In 2009, the area had a population of 1.8 million and doctors there dispersed 16 million prescription painkillers. Doctors in Florida purchase the largest amount of oxycodone by far. Doctors in every state except Florida purchased 4.8 million pills. Doctors in Florida purchased 41.2 million pills, almost ten times the amount. Next time we will continue to look at the issue of illicit pain killer use.

Source: USA Today, “Florida raids target sellers of pain pills,” Donna Leinwand, 2/24/11

Max Keller has won countless jury trial cases involving misdemeanors and felonies, sex crimes, and DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. Max is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

Years of Experience: Approx. 20 years
Minnesota Registration Status: Active
Bar & Court Admissions: State of Minnesota Minnesota State Court Minnesota Federal Court 8th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals State of Maryland

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Confidential informants may provide integral information to help build criminal investigations, but how reliable is that information when they are receiving payment for their services? To protect them, state law requires the identity of informants be kept confidential. For those facing criminal charges, however, this creates challenges in questioning the accuracy and validity of the information given at trial.
Stay calm and compose after getting accused of a crime but not charged in Minneapolis, MN. Do not discuss the facts of your case with anyone, including your relatives and family members. Hire a criminal defense attorney with a demonstrated record of winning cases like yours. Your attorney will discuss your rights, guide you on how to cooperate with law enforcement within the legal boundaries, and build a solid defense strategy to fight the charges you could face in the future.
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