A California doctor is facing charges for allegedly selling opioid prescriptions. If convicted, the doctor could face 20 years in prison. It is alleged that patients traveled from Sacramento and other Northern California cities to receive the doctor's prescriptions. The doctor was arrested in his home in Modesto.
The 71-year old doctor allegedly prescribed drugs without a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of professional practice. The charges claim that the doctor would often write the prescriptions without a medical exam. Pharmacies in the Sacramento area allegedly called in tips to authorities, which led to the investigation of the doctor. In the last year, undercover agents allegedly obtained prescriptions from the doctor for hydrocodone, Xanax and Promethazine mixed with codeine syrup. The agents told the doctor that their own doctors had stopped writing them opioid prescriptions.
Drug charges can arise in a variety of circumstances. In addition to illegal narcotics, the sale of prescription drugs outside the normal practice of medicine can also be illegal. Charges for selling prescription drugs illegally, as is true of all drug charges, can lead to serious and significant penalties and consequences. It is important for accused individuals to keep in mind that there are methods to challenge criminal charges. These defenses may include challenging police procedure, the alleged facts, or witness statements.
Individuals accused of committing drug crimes have important criminal defense rights they should be familiar with. Because drug charges can impact the personal and professional lives of an accused individual in a significant way and threaten their futures, it is essential for them to be familiar with criminal defense protections.
Source: The Sacramento Bee, "Doctor busted prescribing opioids to undercover agents," Molly Sullivan, April 26, 2018