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Indiana’s laws on drug precursors

Just as in other U.S. states, Indiana is strict when it comes to the possession of illegal substances and drugs. But the state also prohibits the possession of drug precursors – reagents used to manufacture controlled substances.

What are drug precursors?

Several reagents are classified as illegal drug precursors. Common examples include:

  • Pseudoephedrine
  • Ephedrine
  • Phenylacetic acid
  • Red phosphorus
  • Anhydrous ammonia
  • Hydrochloric acid
  • Benzaldehyde
  • Ammonium nitrate
  • Ethyl acetate

Unless the person owning these chemicals is a licensed health care provider, pharmacist, retail distributor, warehouseman or common carrier, it’s illegal to possess them.

Penalties for possession

Per Indiana law, a person who possesses over 10 grams of the drug precursors ephedrine, pseudoephedrine, or phenylpropanolamine commits a Level 6 felony. It’s also a Level 6 felony to possess anhydrous ammonia or ammonia solution in any amount with the intent to manufacture meth.

A conviction for a Level 6 felony leads to up to 2.5 years in prison and $10,000 in fines.

Aggravating factors

Certain factors can aggravate a criminal charge related to drug precursors. If an offender had a firearm at the time of the offense, it becomes a Level 5 felony. If the offender had the precursors while inside or within 500 feet of a school, the offense also becomes a Level 5 felony.

A conviction for a Level 5 felony leads to up to six years in prison and $10,000 in fines.

Even if a drug precursor isn’t a controlled substance yet, merely possessing it is a criminal offense. If you’re facing charges, carefully consider your legal options. An attorney with criminal defense experience may be able to represent you and protect your rights in court.