New Okla. law makes prescription drug trafficking a crime

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ARDMORE, OK - For the first time ever on Wednesday afternoon, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin signed a bill into law to combat prescription drug trafficking.

It now makes it a crime to carry 1,000 grams of morphine, 400 grams of oxycodone, 3,750 grams of hydrocodone and 500 grams of benzodiazepine. And anyone caught doing it would face hefty penalties.

Pharmacist Paul Reed with Reed Family Pharmacy said he hopes the new penalties will be a deterrent.

"This is someone who's stealing or acquiring large, very large quantities of medications and transporting them, trying to sell them," Reed said.

Local State Representative Pay Ownbey authored the bill and said that's by design.

"We're going after the people that are getting these drugs on the street, to basically those that are selling the drugs," he said.

Reed said these four are highly sought after and some of the most commonly abused prescriptions. And Ownbey said that right now carrying these drugs illegally does not come with a trafficking charge, but that will change come November 1st when the law goes into effect.

"This is not something we'll see use every day, but this is a tool in the tool box for law enforcement," said Ownbey.

The law says carrying these drugs in these amounts would result in $100,000 to $500,000 fine and prison time.