An undercover police officer had heard rumors that it was possible to purchase drugs without prescription from a pharmacy in Manhattan. He had also heard it said that it was also possible to purchase drugs using a different prescription and the purchase price was discounted when a Medicaid car was used.
A New York Drug Crime Lawyer said the undercover police officer entered the pharmacy and asked to buy forty pills of an antidepressant and a drug for treating high blood pressure. The pharmacy clerk out front told the undercover police officer that 40 pills were too many to sell without a prescription. He also told the undercover police officer that it was a federal crime to sell those drugs without a prescription. However, the clerk told the undercover police officer that he will speak to his boss who will decide. A few minutes later, the clerk came out with two bottles of pills, each containing forty pills. One set of pills was stamp-marked 2105V and the other was stamped 129. He paid twenty dollars for each bottle of pills.
A week later the same undercover cop returned to the pharmacy and asked for 20 antidepressants and 20 high blood pressure pills. He was given two bottles again, one contained 25 pills marked 2105V and 25 pills marked 129.
Three months later, the same undercover police officer went back to the Manhattan pharmacy asking to buy 20 more antidepressants and anti-high blood pressure medication. The clerk refused to sell the undercover cop the medicines he asked for. A New York Drug Possession Lawyer said the clerk claimed that cops had already been to their pharmacy asking questions. Just the same the clerk later came out from the back with two bottles of pills. One bottle contained 20 pills with a stamp-mark of 2105V and the other bottle contained pills stamp-marked 129.
At the end of the month the undercover police officer came in with a prescription. He asked the clerk to fill the prescription. He paid for the medicine using a New York State Benefit Card which was in the name of a woman whom the police officer claimed was his wife. The woman was fictitious.
Later the undercover police officer brought in a prescription for an anti-psychotic drug but he wanted to buy instead the antidepressant and the anti-high blood pressure medicine he had regularly been buying. He presented the same Medicaid card. He was given two bottles with forty pills each. One contained the pills stamp-marked 2105V and the other bottle contained pills stamp-marked 129.
Two months later the same undercover cop came in with a prescription for antiviral drugs used for HIV. He used the prescription but he wanted to buy a controlled pain-killer. The clerk refused to sell him the pain-killers so they haggled and the police officer instead asked to buy the same antidepressant and anti-high blood pressure pills he had been buying in the past. He paid for the medicine using the Medicaid card again. A Nassau County Drug Possession Lawyer said the clerk informed the police officer that if he brought in any identification card with a photo on it, he would be able to purchase the pain-killers he wanted. That weekend the police officer brought in a fake identification car with a photo on it and he was sold a bottle of 40 pills which the clerk said were pain killers.
All the pills purchased by the police officer were vouchered at the precinct after each time that he purchased them. The pills themselves were never subjected to chemical analysis to determine what medicines they truly were.
Two months after the last purchase by the police officer, a police team served a search warrant on the pharmacy. Their search yielded five prescriptions for the “wife” of the undercover police officer. They also found requests for reimbursement from Medicaid for those purchases. They also found a check from Medicaid paying for the pills bought by the undercover police officer for his “wife.” The check amounted to $32, 297.60.
The district attorney charged the pharmacy clerk and his boss, the pharmacist with grand larceny for having fraudulently obtained the amount of $32, 297.60 from Medicaid on a fraudulent card, a non-existent Medicaid member and for medicines other than those appearing in the prescriptions.
A Queens Drug Possession Lawyer said the two accused were convicted of Grand larceny. The two accused assailed the indictment on the ground that there was no legally sufficient basis for this charge. The Court held that the two accused wrongfully took and withheld money from New York State by misleading the Medicaid to pay for the purchase of medicines of a person other than the card owner or cardholder and for medications which were other than those appearing on the prescriptions provided.
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