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An overview of controlled dangerous substances in Maryland

On Behalf of | Mar 21, 2023 | drug crimes |

Controlled Dangerous Substances (CDS) have always been a problem in Maryland, but the pandemic caused a new surge in use, overdoses, and death. Here’s a breakdown of Maryland’s CDS classifications, known as “schedules.”

Schedule I

Drugs in this group are considered highly addictive, unsafe and have no approved use for medical treatments.

  • Marijuana (organic and synthetic)
  • Heroin
  • LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide)
  • Peyote (mescaline)
  • Ecstasy (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine)
  • Bath salts
  • Quaaludes (methaqualone)

With the exception of marijuana, possession of Schedule I drugs has penalties of up to four years in prison and/or a fine of up to $25,000. Distribution of these drugs comes with penalties of up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $25,000.

Schedule II

This classification of narcotics and stimulants is similar to Schedule I in terms of being unsafe and having a strong potential for addiction, except that these drugs are sometimes prescribed for medical treatment.

  • Cocaine
  • Meth (Desoxyn, methamphetamine)
  • Adderall/Dexedrine (amphetamine)
  • Morphine
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin)
  • Fentanyl
  • PCP (phencyclidine)
  • Opium
  • Dilaudid (hydromorphone)
  • Demerol (meperidine)
  • Ritalin (methylphenidate)
  • Amobarbital
  • Glutethimide
  • Pentobarbital
  • Dolophine (methadone)

Schedule III

This group is often used for medical treatments, with a lower potential for abuse, but has been known to cause severe psychological dependence and, to a lesser extent, physical dependence.

  • Tylenol 3 (codeine or hydrocodone with aspirin)
  • Ketamine
  • Didrex (benzphetamine)
  • Phendimetrazine
  • Oxandrin (anabolic steroids such as oxandrolone)
  • Suboxone and Subutex (buprenorphine)

Schedule IV

These CDSs are lower still in their potential for abuse and dependence and are frequently prescribed for medical treatment.

Valium (diazepam)

Xanax (alprazolam)

Klonopin (clonazepam)

Tranxene (clorazepate)

Ativan (lorazepam)

Versed (midazolam)

Restoril (temazepam)

Halcion (triazolam)

Darvon and Darvocet-N 100 (propoxyphene)

Schedule V

This group, composed of cough medicine with low doses of codeine, has the lowest potential for abuse, with minimal dependence.

Illegal manufacture, possession or distribution of Schedule I through IV substances can potentially come with life-altering penalties. If you’ve been charged, seek legal advice immediately.



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