O.C. Psychiatrist Arrested on Federal Charges Alleging Illegal Prescriptions for Opioids Without Medical Need
SANTA ANA, California – A psychiatrist who practices at a Santa Ana clinic has been arrested on federal charges that allege he issued prescriptions for dangerous and addictive narcotics, such as the opioid oxycodone, without a medical purpose.
Dr. Robert Tinoco Perez, 56, of Westminster, was arrested Friday by special agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Perez was named in a 14-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury on June 27. The indictment charges Perez with selling prescriptions to drug customers, as well as to brokers who sold the drugs obtained from filling the prescriptions and split the profits with Perez.
Perez wrote prescriptions for “patients” he had never met or examined, including an undercover officer, according to the indictment. Perez and his co-conspirators allegedly created fictitious medical records for drug customers to provide justification for their prescriptions.
The drugs alleged to have been prescribed illegally by Perez included oxycodone and hydrocodone (both opioid pain medications), amphetamine salts (sold primarily under the brand name Adderall), and alprazolam (sold primarily under the brand name Xanax).
Perez is also charged with possession with intent to distribute nearly one ounce of methamphetamine.
At his arraignment on Friday, Perez pleaded not guilty and was ordered to stand trial on August 21.
A second defendant charged in the indictment – William Jason Plumley, 40, of Huntington Beach – is alleged to have sold both prescriptions written by Perez and the drugs filled from his prescriptions. Plumley already is in federal custody on a previous indictment alleging that he sold methamphetamine.
The indictment charging Perez and Plumley alleges one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, 12 counts of illegal distribution of oxycodone without a legitimate medical purpose, and one count of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Each of the defendants is charged in multiple, but not all, illegal distribution counts.
An indictment contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.
If they were to be convicted of the charges in the indictment, Perez and Plumley each would face potential sentences of over 100 years in federal prison.
This case is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Costa Mesa Police Department.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Rosalind Wang of the Santa Ana Branch Office.