OxyContin Ring Sells 1 Million Pills on the Street
In Los Angeles, 14 people have been charged with running a scheme to obtain OxyContin pills through insurance fraud and distribute them on the street for millions of dollars in profits. The drug distribution ring included two doctors and the operators of a clinic owned by Lake Medical Group. Members of the ring are suspected of reselling more than 1 million OxyContin pills on the street.
According to federal officials, the clinic’s doctors wrote fraudulent prescriptions for the powerful painkiller and billed Medicare and Medical. Most of the prescriptions were written for patients who did not need a painkiller.
Members of the ring are also alleged to have committed identity theft and used stolen Medicare beneficiary information to obtain OxyContin. Among those charged were Dr. Morris Halfnon, aged 88, Dr. Eleanor Santiago, aged 73, and pharmacist Theodore Yoon.
Doctor Faces 230-year Sentence for Prescription Drug Dealing
In today’s changing climate of addiction, where prescription drug abuse has surpassed illegal drug abuse, the drug dealers are often members of the medical profession. This again became evident this week in a Los Angeles federal courtroom when Dr. Nazar Al Bussum pled guilty to drug distribution charges. The 72-year-old geriatric physician, who lives in the exclusive community of Newport Coast but operated clinics in Downy and Los Angeles, could be sentenced to as many as 230 years in prison and fined up to $11.5 million.
Al Bussum is charged with writing prescriptions for narcotic painkillers, codeine cough syrup and anti-anxiety medication for patients who had no medical need for the drugs. The majority of the prescriptions were for oxycodone, hydrocodone and Xanax – all highly addictive substances. Federal prosecutors estimate that he wrote more than 60,000 prescriptions between 2007 …
Teen Heroin Use Rising in Los Angeles Suburbs
According to an article written by the LA Times, the heroin use in Glendale and La Crescenta is rising as LA based gangs make their way into these suburbs and educate and give away the drug to users who are “at risk”of addiction and overdose.
Per the Glendale Police, all drug related offenses that were investigated in the Crescenta Valley during the month of January were attributed to heroin.
This comes at a time when a variety of factors is leading the nation’s youths and young adults into a dangerous love affair with opiates and other drugs like ecstasy, inhalants, meth. The factors are as disparate as prescription drug legislation and the geopolitical climate that affects Afghanistan (the source of much of the world’s heroin). The global economy and the United State’s proximity to Mexico also have an influence on …