United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner
Eastern District of California
Physician Practicing in Grass Valley and Yuba City Indicted for Illegal Prescription Practice
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||
Thursday, January 30, 2014
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A federal grand jury returned a six-count indictment today against Nicholas J. Capos Jr., 63, of Granite Bay, charging him with one count of conspiracy to distribute, dispense, and possess with intent to distribute oxycodone, and five counts of illegal distribution and dispensation of oxycodone, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.
According to court documents, Capos participated in a conspiracy to distribute the drug oxycodone. He is also charged with the distribution and dispensation of oxycodone outside the usual course of professional medical practice and without legitimate medical purposes. The indictment alleges that he illegally dispensed 1,590 30-milligram oxycodone pills in the summer of 2012.
U.S. Attorney Wagner said: “The misuse of oxycodone and other prescription painkillers is responsible for thousands of deaths every year. In this case, the government alleges that a licensed physician dispensed these powerful and deadly painkillers without a legitimate medical purpose. The law provides a consequence for persons who prescribe narcotics outside the scope of legitimate medicine.”
Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent in Charge Jay Fitzpatrick stated: “Physicians who prescribe powerful prescription drugs without a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of professional practice are not acting as doctors nor are they acting in the best interest of the public. DEA will aggressively pursue those who put the health and safety of the public at risk and contribute to the epidemic of prescription drug abuse.”
This case is the product of an investigation by the DEA, the California Medical Board, and the California Attorney General’s Bureau of Medi-Cal Fraud and Elder Abuse. Assistant United States Attorney Paul Hemesath is prosecuting the case.
If convicted, Capos faces a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.