When most people think of “drugs,” they automatically assume the worst. Heroin. Cocaine. LSD. But the word “drugs” also includes lots of common, and sometimes, beneficial chemicals, as well, like ibuprofen, and nicotine. The difference between whether these drugs are legal or illegal depends on whether the state of Maine has outlawed their use or possession. For some drugs, like heroin, the rule is simple, and straightforward – you can never use or possess heroin legally. For other substances, however, the context surrounding your use or possession is crucially important.
To help in determining how the law regulates certain drugs, the state of Maine has created four categories of drugs and chemical substances, which it calls “Schedules.” These Schedules are arranged in letters – W, X, Y, and Z – and generally lists substances from most harmful (Schedule W), to least harmful (Schedule Z).
Schedule W contains the most well-known drugs. These are the most darangerous drugs, because they're easy to get addicted to, and often lead to destructive patterns of drug abuse. Many of these drugs have no recognized medicinal value. Drugs in Schedule W include:
- Amphetamines, including methamphetamine
- Hallucinogens and synthetic hallucinogens, including MDMA, TMA, MDA, DOB, and FMC
- Barbituric acids
- Phencyclidine, or PCP
- Lysergic acids, like LSD
Schedule X contains lesser hallucinogens and depressants. The drugs in this classification are less intense than those in Schedule W, and are used for medicinal purposes more often. Drugs in Schedule X include:
- Mescaline, including peyote
- Stimulants like GHB
- Tranquilizers, including ketamine
- Hallucinogens such as bufotenin, ibogaine, psilocybin, hashish, and other substances coming from plants or mushrooms, as well as DET, DMT, DPT, and AET
Schedule Y contains many potentially dangerous and addictive chemicals that appear in prescription drugs. As such, their negative aspects come with significant medicinal purposes, as well. Schedule Y drugs include:
- Barbiturates such as barbital, methohexital, methylphenobarbital, phenobarbital
- Hypnotics, including chloral betaine, ethchlorvynol, ethinamate, paraldehyde
- Diazepam, also known as valium
- Mushrooms, including ergot
- Benzodiazepines like flurazepam and chlordiazepoxide
- Tranquilizers such as meprobamate
- Sedatives like chloral hydrate
Schedule Z is a catch-all category, and includes any drug not listed in the other Schedules, as well as marijuana.
While many of these drug names are difficult to pronounce, and make it seem like you're reading the ingredients on a tube of toothpaste, that does not mean that you won't be held accountable if you're found with them when you're not supposed to. We'll be going over what it means to illegally possess drugs in future blog posts.
If you have any questions, or are already facing drug charges, call the law office of William T. Bly: (207) 571-8146.