Manufacturing and Distributing Controlled Substances
The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) is the statute governing the United States drug enforcement policy written into law back in 1970 by President Richard Nixon.
There are two main divisions of the U.S. government that resides over controlled substances, and they are the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Each agency decides which substances are allowed to be sold legally in the United States and or are considered illegal substances or potentially abused essentially used not as intended.
A controlled substance often refers to illegal drugs and sometimes legal but abused drugs that when used can cause harm to a person’s health or wellbeing. Many substances such as medicine prescribed in hospitals have to be closely monitored, secured and tracked as part of these laws.
The statute contains five classifications of controlled substances they are as follows:
- Schedule I no medical use, unsafe and high abuse like heroin, LSD, marijuana, peyote, and ecstasy.
- Schedule II narcotics and stimulants with strong addictive properties such as amphetamine, methadone, Demerol, Oxycontin, Percocet, morphine, opium, and codeine.
- Schedule III less likely to be abused and addictive but still some danger, such as Vicodin, Tylenol/Codeine, Suboxone, ketamine and some steroids.
- Schedule IV even less likely to be abused or addictive but still controlled. Examples are Xanax, Soma, Klonopin, Valium, Ativan, Versed, Restoril and Halcion.
- Schedule V very limited abuse and addiction like cough syrups with codeine in them.
It is considered illegal to possess any of the drugs listed above, contained in each of the schedules however, if you have a prescription and are taking them as prescribed then you are not doing anything illegal.
The penalties for controlled substance crimes including possession, selling, and manufacturing vary widely due to a few factors. First the quantity is a key element. Small amounts equal lesser punishment and greater amounts more. However, drug-related crimes are extremely serious, and the penalties can be up to forty years in prison along with fines of 5 million dollars.
When state drug laws conflict with federal, federal law will often prevail.