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Could You Be Jailed for Selling Fake Drugs?

The penalties for selling drugs like marijuana, heroin and cocaine are well known. But what happens if you sell someone fake drugs under the premise they are the real thing? Could you still be subject to criminal charges?

There are several state and federal laws in place that do make it illegal to sell fake drugs. In some situations, you could actually be charged with an attempted drug sale.

In other cases, you could be charged with a type of fraud. The definition of fraud is the intentional taking of money from another person under false pretenses. Thus, if you knowingly gave someone a bag of a substance that was not the drug he or she believed it to be and took that person’s money anyway, it could be considered fraudulent activity. The individual who was buying the drugs would not have taken the substance had he or she known what the actual contents of the package were. Although it is extremely unlikely a person who was attempting to buy drugs would report it to a police officer, it could be a problem if you attempt to sell fake drugs to an undercover officer.

Another common example of a “fake drug” criminal case is making a counterfeit pharmaceutical drug. Making and selling counterfeit drugs is a federal offense if those counterfeits crossed state lines, so in some cases, selling fake drugs could lead to felony drug charges.

If you are charged with selling a fake drug, the best defense options you have available to avoid additional fraud or counterfeit charges are lack of intent to mislead the other person or lack of knowledge that the materials were not actually the drugs you claimed them to be.

To learn more about how to proceed after you are charged with a drug crime, contact trusted Reading criminal defense attorney David R. Eshelman.

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