Senator Bob Deuell
Texas Senate, District 2
P.O. Box 12068 Capitol Station, Austin, Texas 78711

February 16, 2005
CONTACT: Don T. Forse, Jr.
(512) 463-0102

Deuell Files Criminal Justice Bills
Deal with Credit Card Theft and Drug Dealers

State Senator Bob Deuell (R-Greenville) recently filed two pieces of legislation to deal with the ongoing problems of credit card abuse and drugs in our public schools.

The first, Senate Bill 512, relates to the criminal penalty for the unlawful delivery of a dangerous drug on a school bus or in a drug-free zone. Currently, punishments are enhanced for drug crimes in drug-free zones. However, these enhancements only apply to controlled substances such as cocaine, marijuana and methamphetamines. Offenses relating to dangerous prescription drugs are not subject to enhanced penalties.

Senator Deuell said this is a loophole that needs to be closed.

"Powerful prescription drugs such as Xanax, Valium and painkillers are increasingly being possessed and sold on school campuses," Deuell said. "Some of these can be just as dangerous as illegal substances and we need clarify the law."

Another bill, Senate Bill 513, relates to the prosecution of the offense of credit card or debit card abuse. Under the current law, possession of a stolen credit or debit card is not an offense. Law enforcement faces a problem in proving the card is being possessed with the intention to use it. If goods or services are purchased with a stolen card, it is often difficult for law enforcement to prove the individual in possession was actually the one who used the card.

"We need to make it easier for law enforcement officials to deal with this type of crime," Deuell said.