Psych Crime Reporter

July 8, 2014

Psychiatrist Harold Smith gives up license following history of drug-related disciplinary actions

Filed under: controlled substances,prescription drugs,Uncategorized — Psych Crime Reporter @ 3:21 pm

On June 18, 2014 the Florida Board of Medicine accepted Florida psychiatrist’s Harold Edward Smith’s voluntary relinquishment of his medical license.

Per the terms of the agreement, Smith may never again apply for a physician’s license in Florida. This follows his history of at least four medical license suspensions or revocations by three states and by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Aadministration and several narcotic drug use relapses of his own.

Most recently, an administrative complaint was filed against him by the Florida Department of Health alleging he drugged to death a hospitalized patient of his. The medical examiner’s autopsy report stated she died from drug intoxication involving the very same drugs Smith was prescribing to her. Despite obvious symptoms of prolonged drowsiness, Smith raised her dosage twice before a hospital worker found her dead on the floor.

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State of Florida FINALLY takes action on psychiatrist with history of ampthetamine abuse

On June 18, 2014 the Florida Board of Medicine accepted Florida psychiatrist’s David G. Malen’s voluntary relinquishment of his medical license.

Per the terms of the agreement Malen may never again apply for a physician’s license in Florida.

The Florida Department of Health initiated its case against Malen in 2007.

The administrative complaint which resulted in Malen giving up his license, contained information about Malen’s “history of taking ‘extraordinary’ doses of amphetamines with extreme difficulties resulting from the drugs, including depression, suicide attempts and psychosis,” as well as his continued use of and addiction to the substance.

The Department of Health’s document further contains information about Malen’s submission to the state’s Professionals Resource Network (“PRN,” a program for impaird physicians) in 2008. This resulted in Malen undergoing several psychiatric evaluations between 2008 and 2011, all of which found him impaired, yet it appears that the state continued to allow him to practice.

You read that correctly: Malen’s drug addiction was a well-documented concern since 2007, yet his license was free and clear from 2007 to June 2014.

January 11, 2013

NY psychiatrist Gino Grosso sentenced on controlled substance conviction

Filed under: controlled substances,crime and fraud,psychiatrist — Psych Crime Reporter @ 4:50 pm

On July 3, 2012, psychiatrist Gino J. Grosso surrendered his license to the New York State Board for Professional Medical Conduct (BPMC), in response to a charge of professional misconduct. According to the BPMC’s statement of charges, on or about January 5, 2011, Grosso pleaded guilty to the felony of delivery of or possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance. He was sentence June 14, 2011 to no less than three nor more than 10 years in prison.

September 15, 2012

Psychiatrist Priscilla Ilem guilty in pain pill prescriptions for cash scam

Filed under: chronic pain,controlled substances,crime and fraud,psychiatrist — Psych Crime Reporter @ 12:07 pm

An 85-year-old psychiatrist from Wayne (New Jersey), caught in an undercover sting a year ago, pleaded guilty Friday to selling prescriptions of the powerful pain medication oxycodone and agreed to forfeit $500,000 to the government.

Dr. Priscilla G. Ilem admitted her guilt to U.S. District Judge Joseph E. Irenas during a hearing in Camden at which she paid the $500,000 representing the value of her now-shuttered home office, her lawyer said.

Ilem pleaded guilty to four counts of unlawful distribution of a controlled substance, admitting that she prescribed an inordinately large quantity of oxycodone to people that she reasonably knew were falsely claiming to have physical ailments in order to get the highly-addictive drug.

A native of the Philippines, Ilem came to the United States in 1955 and became a citizen in 1964. She had practiced medicine for more than 50 years when she was arrested in August 2011 following an investigation by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and Wayne police.

The probe began after police received information that Ilem was selling oxycodone prescriptions out of the office she kept at her Alps Road home.

During June and July of 2011, at Walgreens Pharmacy alone, 238 patients filled 291 prescriptions for oxycodone that had been written by Ilem, authorities said.

Using confidential sources and undercover officers posing as patients, authorities obtained oxycodone prescriptions from Ilem “during office visits which lasted an average of 10 minutes each and involved no physical examination or testing whatsoever, and for which Ilem charged a cash fee of $200,” her arrest complaint said.

In confessing her guilt, Ilem acknowledged failing to give patients proper physical exams before issuing prescriptions. She also admitted that she wrote prescriptions that were medically unnecessary for four people whom she later learned were undercover officers.

A week before her arrest, the psychiatrist took steps to cover-up her crimes, the complaint said. She went to police headquarters in Wayne and reported a possible prescription fraud, claiming that someone was using her name to write prescriptions, authorities said.

Following her arrest, Ilem admitted that beginning in May 2011 she began writing Roxicodone prescriptions — the brand name of the drug — for patients in their early 20s and 30s who claimed to have physical pain and that she did not perform physical exams, authorities said. She also admitted that the number of young patients visiting her office for Roxicodone increased dramatically in the ensuing months.

After the hearing, Paul Brickfield, a River Edge attorney who represents Ilem, was at a loss to explain his client’s conduct.

“It’s classic aberration behavior that is hard to explain,” he said.

“I can only say it’s a mystery because she had a very distinguished career. It was puzzling to everyone who knew her.”

A former Army Reserve colonel who served as chief executive officer of the 187th Medical Battalion during the Persian Gulf War, Ilem’s license to practice medicine was suspended by the New Jersey Board of Medical Examiners after her arrest.

Once she’s sentenced she will consent to the permanent loss of her license, Brickfield said.

Under federal sentencing guidelines, Ilem faces between 24 and 30 months in prison, Brickfield said. But under her plea agreement, she reserved the right to seek a downward departure based on her age, health and otherwise exemplary life, he said.

The judge set sentencing for Dec. 18 and continued her $1 million bail.

Source: Peter J. Sampson, “Wayne psychiatrist pleads guilty to unlawful distribution of oxycodone,” The Record (New Jersey), September 14, 2012.

August 14, 2012

State reprimands psychiatrist David E. Sosin for excessive prescribing

Filed under: controlled substances,psychiatrist — Psych Crime Reporter @ 8:54 pm

On February 24, 2012, the Medical Board of California issued a public letter of reprimand on psychiatrist David E. Sosin, stating that “An investigation…concluded that you prescribed high doses of stimulant medication to a patient that exceeded the maximum dosage recommended by the Food and Drug Administration, failed to provide informed consent concerning the use of combined stimulants and failed to adequately monitor the stimulant medication, both in strength and quantity.”

Source: Public Letter of Reprimand, Davie E. Sosin, M.D., License No. G13099, Case No. 04-2009-202533, Medical Board of California.

California issues charges against psychiatrist Charles A. Eubanks for negligence, prescribing violations

Filed under: controlled substances,psychiatrist — Psych Crime Reporter @ 8:53 pm

The Medical Board of California issued an Accusation against psychiatrist Charles A. Eubanks, alleging gross negligence, repeated negligent acts, excessive prescribing, prescribing controlled substances to an addict, prescribing dangerous drugs without prior examination and medical indication and record keeping failures.

According to the Board’s document, Eubanks prescribed controlled substances to a patient where there was no medical indication for such treatment; failed to address the patient’s misuse or diversion of the drugs; failed to perform random urine toxicology on the patient; based his prescriptions for controlled substances on requests from the patient and/or the patient’s father and failed to consider and/or document the use of other non-addictive medications and their effectiveness in treating pain, among other things.

Source: Accusation in the Matter of the Accusation Against Charles Aubrey Eubanks, M.D., License No. C33728, Case No. 02-2010-207961, Medical Board of California.

Virginia reprimands psychiatrist Walter S. Jennings over lithium treatment

Filed under: controlled substances,psychiatrist — Psych Crime Reporter @ 8:50 pm

On March 27, 2012, the Virginia Board of Medicine reprimanded psychiatrist Walter Stanley Jennings due to failure to uphold the standard of care in a patient whom he treated with lithium.

According to the Board’s order, Jennings failed to obtain and document obtaining the patient’s informed consent for the use of lithium and the potential risks and benefits of the drug.

He also neglected to evaluate and document the patient’s current symptoms, a diagnosis and other rudimentary initial actions.

Prior to prescribing lithium to the patient, Jennings failed to order or obtain or review diagnostic results related to renal and function, among other things.

During the four years he prescribed lithium to the patient, he did not periodically order renal or thyroid tests.

The patient’s serum lithium levels were obtained only once, by a nurse practitioner, after the patient complained of side effects including tremors and sedation.

Source: Order in re: Walter Stanley Jennings, Jr., M.D., License No. 0101-034383, Before the Virginia Board of Medicine.

Nova Scotia psychiatrist Javed Ali suspended for treating family member

Filed under: controlled substances,psychiatrist — Psych Crime Reporter @ 8:49 pm

On June 4, 2012, the Nova Scotia College of Physicians and Surgeons suspended psychiatrist Javed Ali for two months for inappropriately treating a family member.

According to the Board’s settlement agreement, Ali prescribed a variety of drugs, including psychiatric drugs, between 2005 and 2010 for a relative. Specifically, Ali changed the times and dosages prescribed by the family member’s treating physician.

This came to light in 2010 after Ali took the family member home even though the treating physician had sent the person to the hospital.

Ali initially said his signature had been forged on the prescriptions but he later admitted he had written them.

He agreed that his actions constituted professional misconduct, the decision said.

Source: John McPhee, “Sydney psychiatrist suspended for treating family member,” The Chronicle Herald, June 4, 2012.

July 5, 2012

Memphis psychiatrist Michael Patterson guilty of federal drug charges

Filed under: controlled substances,Oxycontin,psychiatrist — Psych Crime Reporter @ 1:53 pm

On May 4, 2012, Michael A. Patterson, a psychiatrist in Memphis, Tennessee, was found guilty of federal charges of unlawfully distributing prescription drugs.

Patterson was indicted earlier on 38 counts of improperly distributing controlled substances such as Oxycontin, Percocet, Adderall, Lortab and others. He pleaded guilty to two counts of unlawfully distributing 90 oxycodone or Oxycontin tablets by writing prescriptions for no legitimate medical purpose and also unlawfully distributing 60 hydrocodone tablets.

Patterson will be sentenced August 17, 2012. His Tennessee medical license was revoked in 1994 for drug violations and was revoked again last March due to his relapse into chemical dependency.

Source: Lawrence Buser, “Doctor pleads guilty in prescribing drugs,”
The Commercial Appeal, May 4, 2012 and Minutes, Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners, March 22 and 23, 2011.

June 30, 2011

Psychiatrist Lonnie Scarborough convicted, suspended on controlled substance charges

Filed under: controlled substances,crime and fraud,psychiatrist — Psych Crime Reporter @ 1:11 pm

On February 3, 2011, the Georgia Composite Medical Board suspended the license of psychiatrist Lonnie T. Scarborough for not less than three months.

Scarborough was charged in December 2009 with 10 counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud, 10 counts of unlawful distribution of a controlled substance and one count of possession of a controlled substance—all 21 charges involved the controlled substance Ritalin.

Scarborough reported to the Board that he had been over-prescribing the drug for his own use and sought evaluation and treatment.

On or about October 14, 2010, he pleaded guilty in the Superior Court of Chatham County (Criminal Action No. CR101515MO) to the aforementioned Ritalin-related charges and was sentenced to confinement of four years on each count concurrent, to be served on probation with terms and conditions.

Following the suspension of his license, it will placed on probation until terminated by a written order of the Board, subject to Scarborough’s compliance with numerous terms and conditions placed upon his practice and prescribing.

Source: Public Consent Order in the Matter of: Lonnie T. Scarborough, M.D., License No. 22469, Docket No. 10100032, Before the Georgia Composite Medical Board, February 3, 2011.

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