Possession of Fentanyl
Fentanyl was first approved for medical use in 1968, but by 2015 it was considered the most widely used synthetic opioid in medicine. Although the medicine has alleviated a lot of suffering for patients over the years, it’s also become a major component of the current U.S. opioid crisis. It was recorded in 2016 that fentanyl and analogues were the most common cause of overdose deaths. The majority of these deaths were due to illegally made fentanyl.
Due to the opioid crisis, the state of Texas has imposed harsh penalties for possession of fentanyl. Possessing even trace amounts of fentanyl can lead to state jail felony charges. More than a gram’s worth and you’re facing a third-degree or second-degree felony. In some cases, you could even be charged with a first-degree felony depending on the amount of fentanyl found on your person. The penalties associated with these crimes are life changing and could result in years in prison.
If you or someone you know has been charged with possession of fentanyl, it’s crucial you seek an experienced criminal defense attorney for assistance.
Austin Fentanyl Defense Attorney in Texas
Often people who use fentanyl started because it was prescribed to them for an injury or to recover from a major surgery. They then fall into the hole that is addiction and find themselves purchasing illegally made fentanyl and using the drug recreationally. If you have found yourself in a similar scenario and have been charged with possession of opioids, then it’s important you secure legal representation as soon as possible.
Drug defense attorney Kevin Bennett at The Law Office of Kevin Bennett is reputable in the Austin area for his excellent legal service. He has represented numerous people of drug crimes including all types of penalty group 1 opiates. Kevin Bennett’s extensive experience with drug cases as well as his passion for defense puts his clients one step ahead of the prosecution. Start planning your defense with The Law Office of Kevin Bennett by calling (512) 476-4626.
The Law Office of Kevin Bennett represents people throughout all parts of Travis County including Pflugerville, Lakeway, Bee Cave, Lago Vista, Manor, Del Valle and Austin.
Overview of Possession of Fentanyl in Texas
- What is Fentanyl?
- What’s the Punishment for Possessing Fentanyl in Texas?
- What is the Opioid Crisis in the U.S?
- Additional Resources
What is Fentanyl?
Fentanyl is an opioid commonly used as a type of pain medication and in some cases with other medications such as anesthesia. As a recreational drug, fentanyl is often mixed with other controlled substances such as cocaine or heroin. It’s common for users to purchase heroin and be completely unaware it’s cut with fentanyl. The effects of the drugs are nearly automatic and generally last less than two hours. Fentanyl is also considered one of the most powerful synthetic opioids available as it’s determined to be 80-100 times stronger than morphine.
Listed below are some street names used for the substance fentanyl.
- China Girl;
- China White;
- China Town;
- Dance Fever;
- Great Bear;
- Cash; and
What’s the Punishment for Possessing Fentanyl in Texas?
The state of Texas determines the sentence for drug crimes based on the circumstances of the crime, the penalty group it’s under as well as the weight of drugs found. Fentanyl is classified as a penalty group 1 controlled substance, which is the highest penalty group with the harshest penalties. The sentencing guidelines for possession of fentanyl can be found below.
|Amount of Fentanyl||Sentence||Prison term||Fine|
|<1 gram||State Jail Felony||180 days – 2 years||Up to $10,000|
|1 gram–4 grams||Second Degree Felony||2-20 years||Up to $10,000|
|4 grams–200 grams||First Degree Felony||5-99 years||Up to $10,000|
|200 grams–400 grams||Life Felony||10-99 years||Up to $100,000|
|>400 grams||Life Felony||15-99 years||Up to $250,000|
What is the Opioid Crisis in the U.S.?
Fentanyl is quickly growing to become one of the most common types of synthetic opioids used by Americans. There are, however, many types of prescription opioid substances that are trafficked on the streets such as Oxycodone or Codeine. Unfortunately, most prescription opioid users become addicted after receiving the drug as a medication first. Usually for something pain-related such as chronic back pain from a car accident.
It’s common for patients to become drug addicts after receiving a prescription for a pain-relieving opioid. The addiction stems from prescribed patients overusing once they become tolerant to the prescribed opioid’s effects. After their doctor cuts them off, some of these prescribed patients turn to the streets to acquire the drugs they need. This whirlwind of circumstances has happened to hundreds of thousands of Americans as the opioid crisis continues to prey upon new victims each day.
Some examples of other prescriptions opioids include:
- Oxycodone (OxyContin);
- Oxymorphone (Opana);
- Hydrocodone (Vicodin);
- Morphine (Kadian, Avinza);
- Percocet; and
Narcotics (Opioids) Information– Visit the official website for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to learn more about opioids, their effects and the penalties for possessing or selling them. Access the site to learn the origins of opioids, drug fact sheets for certain opioids, opioid related statistics, and more.
Drug Possession Laws in TX– Visit the official website for the current Penal Code to learn more about drug crimes in the state of Texas. Access the site to learn the consequences for possession, manufacturing, or trafficking of opioids. Find more information on penalty groups, other controlled substances and possible admissible defenses to the crime.
Drug Possession Defense Attorney in Houston, Texas
Possessing any opioid can result in serious consequences, but if you’re charged with possession of fentanyl you should expect felony-level penalties. Instead of being idle and worried about what your next move is, we suggest you gain experienced legal representation with The Law Office of Kevin Bennett.
Kevin Bennett of The Law Office of Kevin Bennett is an experienced Austin drug defense attorney who can utilize his resources, skills and dedication for your case. He has assisted many Texans avoid the full statutory penalties of their charges and he can help you too. Contact The Law Office of Kevin Bennett by calling now at (512) 476-4626 to set up your first consultation free of charge.
The Law Office of Kevin Bennett accepts clients throughout the greater Austin and Travis County area including Lago Vista, West Lake Hills and Rollingwood.