Are Steroids illegal in new York (NY)

  • By: Dave Moffat
  • Date: July 12, 2023
Are Steroids illegal in new York (NY)

This article aims to delve into the complex issue of anabolic steroids and their legality in New York. Anabolic steroids, synthetic substances related to male sex hormones, have legitimate medical uses but are often misused for performance enhancement in sports or bodybuilding. The misuse of these substances raises serious health and ethical concerns.

Understanding the legal stance on steroids in New York is crucial, given the state’s significant influence on national policies and its diverse population. Moreover, with the ongoing debates around drug control and public health, this topic holds immense relevance.

The implications of steroid laws affect not just athletes and fitness enthusiasts, but also healthcare providers, law enforcement agencies, and the general public.

The Legality of Steroids in New York

In New York, it is illegal to have anabolic steroids without a valid prescription. Anabolic steroids are classified as Schedule II substances under the New York State Public Health Law, Section 3306. This classification means that these substances have a high potential for abuse and can lead to severe physical and psychological dependence.

Possession of anabolic steroids in New York is considered a criminal offense. If caught, the individual could face severe penalties, including fines and imprisonment. The severity of the penalty often depends on the amount of the substance found in possession and whether the individual has any prior convictions.

Selling or intending to sell anabolic steroids is a felony in New York. The penalties for such an offense can be even more severe, potentially leading to longer jail terms and higher fines.

Using anabolic steroids without a prescription is also illegal. The consequences of using steroids illegally can extend beyond legal penalties. The misuse of anabolic steroids can lead to serious health problems, including liver damage, cardiovascular diseases, mood swings, and other psychological disorders.

It’s important to note that these laws and penalties apply not just to professional athletes or bodybuilders, but to anyone found misusing these substances. The state has strict regulations in place to discourage the non-medical use of anabolic steroids and protect public health.

For exact legal advice or information, one should consult with a legal professional or refer to the specific legislation.

The Consequences of Illegal Steroid Use

Health Risks Associated with Illegal Steroid Use

The misuse of anabolic steroids can lead to serious health complications. These include cardiovascular problems such as heart attacks and strokes, liver damage, and kidney problems. Users may also experience severe mood swings, aggression, and other mental health problems.

In males, steroid misuse can cause shrinkage of the testicles, reduced sperm count, infertility, baldness, and the development of breasts. For females, too much steroid can result in a deeper voice, increased body hair, changes in menstrual cycles, and even male-pattern baldness.

Legal Consequences for Those Caught Using or Dealing Steroids Illegally

In New York, as mentioned earlier, possession, use, or sale of anabolic steroids without a valid prescription is illegal. The exact penalties can vary depending on the specific circumstances of each case, but they can be severe.

For instance, possession of anabolic steroids is considered a misdemeanor, which could lead to up to a year in jail. If you’re caught selling steroids, it’s a felony offense that could result in a prison sentence of up to seven years. Moreover, these offenses typically come with hefty fines, and repeat offenders often face more severe punishments.

Remember, these legal consequences can significantly impact one’s personal and professional life. Criminal charges can result in a permanent record, making it harder to find employment, secure housing, or even travel outside the country. It is therefore crucial to understand the implications of illegal steroid use and to consider the potential consequences carefully.

Case Studies

Illegal steroid use is not a new phenomenon in New York. Many athletes, particularly bodybuilders, have been caught using performance-enhancing drugs that are banned by the professional sports association. Here are some notable cases related to illegal steroid use in New York: 

Anthony Bosch and Biogenesis Clinic 

Anthony Bosch was a notorious steroid dealer in the sports world. In 2013, Bosch and his Biogenesis clinic became known for providing steroids to professional baseball players, including New York Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez, and other athletes.

Evidence showed that Bosch provided banned substances to several players and coaches. In 2014, Bosch was sentenced to four years in prison for distributing performance-enhancing drugs. 

Richard Rodriguez and Wellness Fitness & Nutrition 

In 2018, Richard Rodriguez, the founder of Wellness Fitness & Nutrition, pleaded guilty to distributing steroids and other PEDs to both professional and amateur athletes in New York. Rodriguez admitted to selling more than 10,000 doses of PEDs, including steroids, human growth hormones, and insulin-like growth factors, among others. Rodriguez was sentenced to three years in prison in 2019. 


Both the cases mentioned above resulted in the conviction of the accused individuals. The Biogenesis scandal led to the suspension of more than a dozen Major League Baseball players, while Richard Rodriguez’s arrest was a result of a joint investigation between the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the New York Police Department (NYPD). 

The outcomes of these cases, along with the enforcement efforts by the DEA and NYPD, have sent a strong message that illegal steroid use will not be tolerated in New York, especially in professional sports.

However, despite the penalties and legal consequences, illegal steroid use continues to be a problem in many sports circles. Therefore, there is a need for more awareness, education, and enforcement efforts to combat the issue effectively.


It is essential to comprehend the potential risks and legal consequences of steroid misuse. Throughout this article, we have explored the various ways that steroids can greatly impact one’s health, including liver damage, heart disease, and hormonal imbalances.

By recapitulating the central points, we can quickly remind ourselves of the potential dangers associated with steroid use. However, beyond the physical harm, there are also legal implications attached to the misuse of these substances.

The legal fallout could result in criminal charges and significant monetary fines. Therefore, before anyone considers using steroids, it is essential to understand the full picture of the risks and the legal ramifications of misuse.

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Hi, I'm Dave Moffat the founder and Chief Editor of and certified International Personal Trainer and Certified Nutritionist. My passion has always been bodybuilding but with 15 years' experience in weight loss programs too, it's hard not to mention all that when you're working at your fitness level fullest (I hope). When Im not in the gym or spending time away from my family i often think about what advice would help others achieve theirs goals just like these inspired mine.