Kansas City Criminal Defense Lawyers
What You Should Know About Federal Drug Diversion Investigations

What You Should Know About Federal Drug Diversion Investigations

Drug diversion involves the transfer of prescription drugs from the person legally receiving the substance to another person for illicit use. This federal drug crime is often typically aimed at medical professionals.

Whether you have been contacted by a federal agent or been subpoenaed, being investigated for federal drug diversion can be a stressful, scary, and confusing situation. Rather than navigating the legal process in the dark, you should understand what to expect and take legal action to protect your reputation, rights, and future.

The following are several important facts about federal drug diversion investigations:

  • Fighting the opioid epidemic is a top priority for federal law enforcement – The White House declared a national public health emergency on the opioid epidemic in 2017. This means federal law enforcement agencies are prioritizing drug diversion cases and aggressively targeting healthcare providers (e.g. doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and even business owners) who have contributed to the epidemic.
  • The investigation may involve multiple federal agencies – Although the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) primarily enforces U.S. drug laws, the government’s battle against drug diversion can include the Federal Bureau Investigation (FBI), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Office of Inspector General (OIG).
  • A conviction for federal drug diversion is punishable by harsh penalties – When medical professionals divert prescription drugs, they face federal charges. According to the Controlled Substance Act (CSA), drug diversion carries a maximum 10-year federal prison sentence and a fine not exceeding $250,000
  • In addition to federal drug diversion, medical professionals can be charged with other federal crimes – Common federal crimes include healthcare fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, money laundering, and conspiracy.
  • There are many “red flags” may lead to an investigation – Common examples include opioid prescriptions in high volume, scarce amount of patient records, lack of in-person patient exams.
  • Do not interact with federal authorities – It is a huge mistake to answer any questions from federal agents without first obtaining legal advice. Other mistakes include destroying medical records and continue engaging in illegal prescription practices.

As soon as you are contacted by federal authorities or learn you are being investigated for federal drug diversion, it is important to hire an experienced federal crime attorney. At Rokusek Stein Law, LLC, we have more than three decades of combined legal experience protecting our clients from federal charges in Kansas.

For more information about federal drug crimes, contact us today (913) 583-0465 and request a free case review.

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