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Federal authorities say a 31-year-old former pharmacy technician pleaded guilty to stealing the powerful drug known as oxycodone in Carlsbad.

Amber Kay Otero pleaded guilty on Tuesday in Las Cruces to a misdemeanor offense of unlawfully possessing a controlled substance. Authorities say she was arrested on Sept. 23 following an investigation. Otero admitted to having taken oxycodone pills from a bottle at a pharmacy where she worked last year.

She faces a maximum of one year in federal prison and a sentencing hearing will be scheduled in the future.

Oxycodone is a powerful opioid pain medication known for its addictive qualities. Officials in New Mexico have long linked it a spike in heroin use because it is expensive when compared to the cost of heroin, which offers the same high.