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Quick Roundup of the Top Drug Crime News

Photo: GavelThe federal government has made it clear that it views even minor drug offenses to be punishable by the maximum sentence, and that may be bad news if you’re facing a drug charge. That’s why it’s important for you to know the most significant drug crime news from the month of December, so you can be aware of how it could affect your criminal case.

Charleston Inmate Pleads Guilty To Federal Drug Conspiracy

A prisoner in Charleston, West Virginia plead guilty on December 13 to federal drug trafficking conspiracy charges. Velarian S. Carter, 38, admitted his guilt on charges of possession with intent to distribute and conspiracy to distribute 100 grams of heroin, 280 grams of crack cocaine, and five kilograms of cocaine.

Carter is one of 23 defendants that were indicted in June and accused of being members of a drug trafficking organization that was selling cocaine, crack, and heroin in Raleigh County. Carter admitted that he took part in setting prices for the drugs, and the allocation of money received for the sale of those drugs. He faces a minimum sentence of 20 years, and a maximum sentence of life in a federal prison. The new sentence Carter receives for his drug crimes will be served in addition to the remainder of his current sentence.

Nevada Doctor Arrested For Illegal Distribution of Prescription Painkillers

A cardiologist based in Elko, Nevada was arrested on December 12 on 36 counts of unlawful distribution of prescription opioids. Federal authorities took Dr. Devendra I. Patel, 58, into custody on charges that he illegally distributed (sold prescription painkillers such as hydrocodone and oxycodone.

Federal authorities said that for three years, Patel prescribed opioids to his patients without a medical purpose. Dr. Patel has the distinction of being the first person arrested in Nevada by the newly-formed Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit created by Attorney General Jeff Sessions in the summer. The unit includes data analysts, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys from different parts of the country that go after doctors who are committing opioid-related fraud.

The federal government said that it’s beginning to focus on the role doctors have played in the current opioid crisis that has resulted in thousands of overdoses, and forced the president to declare a public health emergency. The government is hoping that prosecuting doctors who try to profit off this crisis will send a strong message.

Hire A Top Drug Defense Attorney

Whether you are arrested on state or federal drug charges, you may be facing some serious jail time if you don’t hire a lawyer who can challenge the evidence and make sure that your rights were not violated during the arrest. The Elden Law Group has more than 30 years of experience defending clients on drug possession, drug distribution, and drug manufacturing charges. We have seen the landscape change, and understand that even minor drug offenses can result in jail time if a defendant has the wrong lawyer. Please call us today at (888) 991-9353 to schedule a free consultation.

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