New Jersey ‘El Chapo of Opioids’ sentenced to six years

A New Jersey physician who dubbed himself because the “Sweet Man” and the “El Chapo of Opioids” was sentenced Thursday to 6 years in federal jail for writing scripts for sufferers who didn’t want them, a few of whom he by no means even noticed.

Robert Delagente, 48, pleaded responsible in February 2020 to distribution of managed harmful substances, conspiracy to distribute them and falsifying medical information whereas performing as a pill-mill physician at North Jersey Household Medication in Oakland.

He’s been sentenced to a further three years of supervised launch along with jail time, the U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace for New Jersey announced on Thursday.

Delagente started working on the medical facility in 2014, the place he prescribed addictive opioids “akin to oxycodone, Percocet, Tylenol with codeine, and numerous benzodiazepines” with out respectable medical functions, based on court docket paperwork.

The physician allowed his sufferers to specify the energy and dosage of medication he prescribed, typically doling out a harmful combo often known as the “Holy Trinity” — opioids, benzodiazepines and muscle relaxers, prosecutors stated.

Delagente additionally failed to watch sufferers for dependancy and pharmaceuticals to sufferers who he knew had been addicted, prosecutors stated.

A affected person who was clearly hooked on opioids texted the physician in a single trade, “If I am going 4 days with out [painkillers] I’m in enormous hassle.”

Delagente responded again, writing “I’ll depart you a brief provide RX [prescription] on the entrance to select up,” and wrote the affected person a prescription for 20 tablets of 30-milligram oxycodone for 30 days.

“I’m actually sticking my neck out and may lose my medical license or [be] arrested for what I simply did,” he advised the affected person in the course of the trade.

“He ignored the inherent hazard and medical threat of overdose, drug abuse, and demise that may accompany prescriptions of extremely addictive opioids, benzodiazepines, and muscle relaxers, each on their very own and together with each other,” DOJ officers stated in an announcement Thursday.

He was moreover charged with altering medical information of sufferers he had written prescriptions for, information subpoenaed by the federal government confirmed.

“This defendant knowingly prescribed for his sufferers a few of the most harmful and addictive medication out there, generally with no extra contact than a textual content message from the affected person,” U.S. Legal professional Carpenito said in a statement after Delagente’s responsible plea.. “Many of those sufferers had been coping with ache and dependancy, and as an alternative of getting assist from their physician, they had been drawn deeper into the cycle of drug abuse.”

Delagente additionally pleaded responsible in 2019 to state fees of well being care claims fraud for $32,000 in companies he by no means rendered, resulting in the non permanent suspension of his medical license, according to the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office.

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