Oklahoma City Psychiatrist Charged with Illegal
Distribution of Controlled Prescription Drugs Resulting
in the Death of Five Individuals
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma – A federal grand jury has charged AMAR NATH BHANDARY, M.D., 51, from Oklahoma City, with a 53-count indictment alleging illegal distribution of controlled substances to eight separate individuals which resulted in the death of five of those individuals, announced Sanford C. Coats, United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma
According to the Indictment, Dr. Bhandary was licensed to practice medicine in Oklahoma and was engaged in the practice of psychiatry. The indictment alleges that Dr. Bhandary dispensed various controlled drugs to eight separate individuals outside the course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose in 2008 and 2009. It is further alleged that Dr. Bhandary’s actions resulted in the death of five of those individuals from drug toxicity.
The drugs dispensed by Dr. Bhandary included opiates (Schedule II controlled narcotic pain relievers) and benzodiazepines (Schedule IV controlled central nervous system depressants) which are each available by prescription only. When opiates and benzodiazepines are taken together, there is a greatly increased risk of respiratory depression and death. The specific drugs dispensed included morphine, fentanyl, oxycodone, oxymorphone, meperidine, alprazolam, diazepam, temazepam and clonazepam.
If convicted, Dr. Bhandary faces no less that 20 years and up to life in prison for each of the five counts of illegal distribution of controlled substances that resulted in the five deaths. In addition, he faces up to 20 years in prison on each of the other 48 counts of illegal distribution of the controlled substances.
These charges are the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Norman Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Randy Sengel.
The public is reminded that an indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and are entitled to a fair trial, at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Reference is made to the indictment for further information.