By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law
Sex, prescription drugs and money - sounds like the next big rock ‘n’ roll song, doesn’t it? According to a number of news sources, the owner of an Avalon Park-area pharmacist was allegedly knowingly filling phony prescriptions for painkillers. The pharmacist is also accused of exchanging sex for drugs with at least one woman, according to the Orlando Sentinel. This investigation was led by the Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation (MBI) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Both agencies simultaneously raided the pharmacy on November 29, 2012.
Avalon Park is a community it the greater Orlando area.
Filling Fake Prescriptions Led to Raid.
According to WFTV, the owner of the pharmacy and two employees sat handcuffed outside the pharmacy as federal drug agents reportedly removed boxes of evidence from the pharmacy during the raid. Agents then moved onto the pharmacist’s nearby home.
It’s believed another person was producing fake prescriptions and asking others to get them filled at the Avalon pharmacy and others around town. The people who fill the prescriptions are nicknamed “smurfs.” They are usually hired by a drug ring. They return the pills from the prescriptions they get filled back to the ring. Click here to read what Papa Smurf has to say about his name being used in such a manner.
According to WFTV, 230 fraudulent prescriptions were produced and 33 were filled at the Avalon-area pharmacy.
Click here to watch WFTV’s report on this raid.
Pharmacist’s Sex Scandal.
A woman, who worked as a smurf, allegedly told federal agents she had sex with the pharmacist. Afterward, the pharmacist gave her cash and oxycodone, according to the Orlando Sentinel. However, we want to make it clear that those who break the law and get caught often point the finger at innocent people, trying to divert blame from themselves.
To read the article from the Orlando Sentinel, click here.
Facing Serious Charges.
The pharmacist faces up to 32 counts of trafficking in controlled substance and one count of conspiracy to traffic. Federal agents believe the pharmacist is part of a larger drug ring.
On the Florida Department of Health (DOH) website his license is still listed as clear/active. To see his license status, click here.
Remember, all who are name or discussed in our blog are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Contact Health Law Attorneys Experienced with Representing Pharmacists and Pharmacies.
The attorneys of The Health Law Firm provide legal representation to pharmacists and pharmacies in Department of Health (DOH) investigations, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) investigations, FBI investigations and other types of investigations of health professionals and providers.
To contact The Health Law Firm, please call (407) 331-6620 or (850) 439-1001 and visit our website at www.TheHealthLawFirm.com.
Tell us your thoughts on this story. Are federal drug agents fighting a losing battle? Please leave any thoughtful comments below.
Barrett, Steve. “Avalon Park Pharmacy Owner Accused of Filling Fake Oxycodone Prescriptions.” WFTV. (November 30, 2012). From: http://www.wftv.com/news/news/local/dea-agents-raid-avalon-park-pharmacy/nTJbw/
Pauk, Amy. “Pharmacist Accused of Over-Dispensing Painkillers, Exchanging Pills for Sex.” Orlando Sentinel. (November 29, 2012). From: http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/local/breakingnews/os-avalon-park-pharmacy-20121129,0,6040870.story
About the Author: George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law. He is the President and Managing Partner of The Health Law Firm, which has a national practice. Its main office is in the Orlando, Florida, area. www.TheHealthLawFirm.com The Health Law Firm, 1101 Douglas Ave., Altamonte Springs, FL 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620.
Tag Words: Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation (MBI), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), DEA investigation, DEA raid, criminal charges, legal defense for pharmacists, legal representation for pharmacists, pharmacies, pharmacist, defense attorney, defense lawyer, quality assurance, pharmacy investigation, fake prescriptions, smurfs, drug trafficking, Florida Department of Health (DOH), administrative hearings
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