Possession of a Controlled Substance Defenses Virginia Court of Appeals Decision

The Virginia Court of Appeals ruled that the affirmative defense of a valid prescription requires the defendant to present supporting evidence of that in a prosecution for possession of a controlled substance under Virginia Code 18.2-250. The defendant has the burden of providing evidence of the prescription, since that information is “peculiarly within the knowledge of the appellant.” The statute criminalizes possession of controlled substances, and a prescription is the only valid exception. The case citation is Williams v. Commonwealth of Virginia, 57 Va. App. 341, 702 S.E.2d 260 (2010).

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