After three days of deliberations, a federal jury found three doctors and an investor not guilty of a slew of charges related to their roles in Jacksonville pain clinics. The three doctors were charged with conspiracy to manufacture and distribute controlled substances, along with money laundering charges, according to a report in the Florida Times-Union. The investor, Jason Votrobek, faced the same Jacksonville Drug Crimes Charges, but not money laundering, the newspaper reported.
The doctors were accused of writing thousands of prescriptions for oxycodone, making millions of dollars for the three pain clinics they worked for in Jacksonville, the newspaper reported. Criminal defense attorneys for the four defendants said they were duped by the clinic’s owner, Zachary Rose, who was in the business strictly for the money. Rose pleaded guilty earlier to drug conspiracy charges and could receive up to 30 years in prison when he is sentenced, the newspaper reported. Rose testified against his former employees and said they all knew the business was deigned to make money off the prescription drugs. The move was likely a strategic decision designed for Rose to help the government get four more convictions, in return for a lighter sentence. That move, in this Jacksonville Drugs Crimes Case, backfired.
The Jacksonville pain clinics were open for about eight months in 2009 and 2010 and federal prosecutors said the businesses regularly deposited between $40,000 and $60,000 daily, the newspaper reported. The businesses flourished before the state cracked down on pain clinics such as these three that were dubbed “pill mills.” Buyers came to Florida from other states because of the ease of getting the popular prescription drugs and many of the people who purchased the drugs would return home and sell them at a profit, the newspaper reported.
Ultimately, the jurors were not convinced that the three doctors and the investor were in on the scheme to sell prescription drugs at a profit. Prescription drug charges carry extremely serious penalties and often have minimum mandatory sentences attached to them. The state can file drug trafficking charges on someone for having just four grams of prescription drugs, which can be as few as eight pills. That charge would carry a minimum mandatory sentence of three years in prison. For more than 14 grams of pills, there’s a minimum mandatory sentence of 15 years in prison. Many factors come into Jacksonville Drugs Crime Cases involving prescription drugs – including whether or not the person has a valid prescription. There are clearly medical reasons people have them – and prescribe them, as seen in the Jacksonville Drugs Crimes Case that resulted in four acquittals last week.
If you or a loved one needs a criminal defense attorney in Jacksonville or the surrounding area, call The Mussallem Law Firm at (904) 365-5200 for a FREE CONSULTATION. Our Jacksonville Drug Crimes Attorney, Victoria “Tori” Mussallem, is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.