West Virginia Pharmacy Pays $2 Million For Improper Dispensing Of Painkillers
1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
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WHEELING, WEST VIRGINA – A West Virginia pharmacy and several of its employees have paid $2 million to end a Federal investigation into its operation.
United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II announced today a $2 million civil settlement with Judy’s Drug Store, Inc., Darin Judy, Emily Judy, Kimberly Arbaugh and Casey Watts.
Judy’s Drug Store is a privately owned pharmacy located in Petersburg, Grant County, West Virginia. Darin Judy is a manager of the Drug Store. Emily Judy is the president of Judy’s Drug Store, Inc. and works as a pharmacist. Arbaugh and Watts both work there as pharmacists.
As part of the settlement Judy’s Drug Store and the identified individuals have paid $2 million to the United States to settle accusations the Drug Store repeatedly filled prescriptions for controlled substances, such as oxycodone and hydromorphone, not written for legitimate medical purposes. The pharmacists filled these prescriptions outside the scope of professional practice.
“This is another important step in our efforts to prevent prescription painkillers from being diverted and used for improper purposes,” said U.S. Attorney Ihlenfeld. “We used both our criminal and civil authority to accomplish our mission in this case, and we would have sought criminal charges against one of the pharmacists involved had he not passed away.”
The federal investigation into Judy’s Drug Store arose after the U.S. Attorney’s Office prosecuted and obtained a conviction against Hardy County, West Virginia physician, Rajan Masih, in 2011. Dr. Masih was convicted of distributing controlled substances for other than legitimate medical purposes and outside the scope of professional practice. Dr. Masih wrote many of the prescriptions for controlled substances improperly filled by Judy’s Drug Store.
“Today’s settlement serves as a warning to those who are driven by greed that distracts them from their responsibilities to the very communities in which they live and work. The citizens of Grant County should be able to walk their streets and go about daily activities with their families without fear or exposure to drug related activity resulting from suspect dispensing of controlled substance pharmaceuticals,” said Karl C. Colder, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, Washington, D.C. Field Division.
Assistant United States Attorney Alan G. McGonigal handled this matter, in coordination with the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency.