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New York physician accused of illegally prescribing painkillers

When doctors in New York take the Hippocratic Oath, they swear to protect and serve patients honestly and without harm. However, one physician has found himself being accused of breaking that oath by allegedly prescribing addictive pain medication to those who did not need it.

A 47-year-old New York physician has recently been charged with illegal distribution of a controlled substance after allegedly prescribing pain medication to people who did not need it. According to the prosecution, the doctor prescribed painkillers hundreds of times from the beginning of 2009 to September 2013 for no medical reason.

The painkillers allegedly prescribed included highly addictive medications such as methadone, oxycodone, carisprodol and oxymorphone. The physician has surrendered himself to the Tactical Diversion Squad of the Drug Enforcement Administration, which has apprehended a number of other physicians in similar circumstances.

When many people think of drug offenses, they may think of the consumption, manufacturing and sale of drugs such as heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana. However, prescription drugs such as painkillers are another highly sought after controlled substance.

Doctors accused of illegally prescribing medications may face more than criminal charges. They may find that their very job and livelihood are at stake even if they are not convicted. Mere accusations of drug crimes can tarnish a physician's reputation and may result in that physician losing his or her job and in some cases, his or her license to practice medicine.

Because of this, it is important that those accused of drug crimes understand all the charges they face. By doing so, the accused may be able to mount the strongest possible defense to preserve their innocence and reputation.

Source: Long Island Press, "Centereach Doctor Arrested on Drug Charge," Timothy Bolger, May 21, 2014

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