Pasco County Pharmacist Sentenced For Illegally Distributing Pain Medications
Tampa, Florida - United States District Judge Susan Bucklew today sentenced Edward Benjamin Alister Beckles (59, Pasco County) to 4 years in federal prison for distributing Oxycodone. He was also ordered to serve a two-year term of supervised release. As part of his sentence, the court also entered a money judgment in the amount of $175,000, the proceeds of the charged criminal conduct. Beckles pleaded guilty on March 26, 2013.
According to court documents, in 2010, detectives from the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office and agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration began an investigation to identify members of a large Oxycodone pill distribution ring. As a result of the investigation, 33 individuals were arrested and prosecuted.
From August 2009 through January 2012, individuals presented fraudulent prescriptions for Oxycodone to Beckles at his pharmacy and he filled the prescriptions, knowing they were fraudulent. Beckles was a licensed pharmacist and the owner of Ed’s Family Friendly Pharmacy in New Port Richey. During the investigation, Beckles provided federal agents with a computer printout that showed the pharmacy made in excess of $130,000 in a 45-day period from the illegal sale of Oxycodone. According to this document, Beckles filled approximately 210 fraudulent prescriptions in the 45-day period. Each prescription was for 270 pills.
This case was brought as part of the Pill Nation initiative and was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez.