Posted: Mar 7, 2013 10:19 PM by Brittany Weiss
Updated: Mar 7, 2013 10:19 PM
IBERVILLE PARISH - The use and sale of illegal prescription drugs is on the rise around the country. Iberville Parish Sheriff Brett Stassi says he's seen numbers in his parish become more prevalent than marijuana and cocaine charges.
"With the easy access, you don't have to go look for it," said Stassi. "Pharmacies are popping up on all the corners."
Deputies say suspects drive in from surrounding parishes or across state lines to buy Schedule II narcotics, then turn around and sell them to people in their own neighborhood.
"They get several prescriptions for different types of prescription medicine that they use, and sell them on the street," said Stassi.
Pharmacies in Plaquemine say they have busted people in the past who try to buy prescription drugs with a forged prescription.
"If someone walks in and they're not our regular customer, that's kind of a red flag," said pharmacist Lucinda Johnson.
Law enforcement say it's difficult to track those selling prescription drugs illegally, because having them on your person looks legal. It took eight months for Sheriff Stassi and his deputies to track over 50 suspects.
Pharmacists warn that taking prescrition drugs not prescribed to the person taking them can cause addiction, or overdose.
Deputies are still searching for a dozen suspects in Iberville Parish.