The abuse of prescription medications is a crime that carries stiff penalties in Michigan. Individuals found guilty of drug offenses may face jail time, driver's license sanctions, mandatory drug screening and steep court fines. This is something that 12 Michigan residents are hoping to avoid.

A recent news report indicated that 12 people in the tri-county area around Lansing now face drug charges for their involvement in prescription drug abuse. The accused individuals were alleged to have obtained prescriptions for painkillers, only to resell them for a steep profit. The Lansing Police Department has currently arrested seven of the 12 individuals known to be involved in these drug rings.

According to Lansing Police Department's Special Operations unit, there may have been two separate drug rings involved in this series of alleged crimes, each working independently. Investigators have been looking into these operations since May. If the arrested individuals are found guilty, they face serious consequences. The Ingham County prosecutor stated that the fines range from $30,000 to $500,000, and the accused face up to four years in prison each for the charges.

Serious consequences are common for drug charges in Michigan. However, options exist to help those charged with these crimes seek reduced penalties. Those facing such charges should learn all they can about their rights and the steps they can take to reduce charges or consequences if they are found guilty of drug possession or drug trafficking. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help.

Source: MLive.com, "12 charged in prescription drug, Medicaid fraud rings in Lansing area," Angela Wittrock, Dec. 10, 2012