Rivas Goldstein, LLP Call : 646-859-3790

NY doctor accused of criminal prescription sale: Part II

As noted in the previous post, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) recently arrested a NY doctor for criminal sale of prescription medications and homicide. The previous piece discussed the investigation and the criminal sale charges, this post will discuss the homicide charges and potential defenses for physicians that face similar charges.

Accusations escalate: Physician accused of murder

Two of the physician’s patients fatally overdosed on prescribed medications within three days of receiving the prescription for the doctor. The government is using this information to support charges of manslaughter against the physician.

The DEA claims the physician prescribed oxycodone, clonazepam and carisoprodol without first performing a medical check-up to one of the victims. When taken together, these types of prescriptions are known to suppress respiration rates and increase the risk of overdose. The agency states the other victim died as a result of opioid abuse. The DEA claims the physician was aware of the abuse and allege the only adjustment the physician made in his prescribing practices was an increase in dosage.

A special agent in charge of the investigation for the government has stated that the physician had a complete disregard for the practice of medicine and that his actions were “a parent’s worst nightmare and an opioid addict’s dream.”

Potential defenses: Physicians can fight these charges

The government has charged this physician with two counts of Second Degree Manslaughter, nine counts of Reckless Endangerment and 220 counts of Criminal Sale of a Prescription for a Controlled Substance.

The government considers many medications that help with pain management controlled substances. As a result, a legitimate physician working to help ease a patient’s pain could find themselves targeted by the DEA for similar accusations.

A physician can build a defense to these accusations. One example noted by the United States National Library of Medicine’s National Institutes of Health (NIH) involves the use of the medication in question for a legitimate medical purpose. It is wise to gather evidence to establish this requirement. An attorney experienced in these matters can help gather this evidence and explore additional defensive strategies that may be available.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Schedule A Consultation With An Attorney

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Austin Office
3345 Bee Cave Rd, Suite 104
Austin, TX 78746

Phone: 512-481-2916
Map & Directions

New York Office
By Appointment Only
405 Lexington Ave 26th Floor
New York, NY 10174

Phone: 646-859-3790
Map & Directions

New Jersey Office
By Appointment Only
1 Gateway Center, Suite 2600
Newark, NJ 07102

Phone: 646-859-3790
Map & Directions

Review Us