On July 1, 2010 the Florida Department of Law Enforcement issued a report that highlighted Pinellas county as leading the state with oxycodone related deaths in 2009. The FDLE's investigative report revealed that Pinellas county also led the state with both hydrocodone and methadone deaths as well.
Pinellas county has already suffered a nation-wide black eye with their reputation as a "pill mill." That distinction has attracted users from far away states and has led to greater scrutiny by law enforcement. Reports of police raids on pain clinics in the St. Petersburg Times have been common place as of late.
Captain Robert Alfonso, head of the narcotics division of the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office has confirmed that doctor shopping moved from Broward county to Pinellas county after Broward closed up unethical "pill mills." Alfonso was responsible for last year's "Operation Medicine Cabinet" which brought attention to another Pinellas county prescription drug/death related issue.
Prescription drug deaths in Florida are monitored by the state Medical Examiner's Office. Last year, they rose to 2,488 or an average of seven per day. The last thing that Pinellas county needs is to take credit for the state's best beaches and most accessible oxycodone outlets.
Florida's new prescription drug monitoring database is scheduled to go operational before December 1, 2010. This computerized link-up will be used as a tool to identify persons engaged in doctor shopping and drug trafficking. It will of course also lead to arrests for persons engaged in prescription fraud and possession of controlled substance charges. Our office believes that the new database will overwhelm law enforcement with work once it goes live.
But, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and other area police are not waiting for the prescription drug monitoring database. They recently confirmed having devoted more resources to catching prescription drug abusers. With the new FDLE report just released, they are now under greater public pressure.
Have You Been Arrested for...
Doctor Shopping, Prescription Fraud, Drug Trafficking, Possession of Oxycodone Oxycontin Roxicodone or any other Drug Related Offense?
We are St. Petersburg / Clearwater criminal defense lawyers with significant experience in dealing with criminal cases involving the trafficking, sale or possession of drugs. We are well familiar in the defense of prescription fraud (Fla. Stat. 893.13(9)) and doctor shopping cases (Fla. Stat. 893.13(7)) that involve controlled substances such as Oxycontin. Our practice is limited exclusively to criminal cases in Pinellas County and we regularly appear in Pinellas county's drug court. Our office knows how addiction can play a major role in motivating theses offenses. We also know how efforts toward rehabilitation can serve as a mitigating factor in dealing with the charge. We can deliver constructive advice and tailor a strategy that is focused on avoiding conviction, avoiding jail, and obtaining drug treatment.
Contact our office for a free consultation at (727) 578-0303
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