East Hartford Doctor Admits Illegally Prescribing Oxycodone, Failing to Pay Taxes
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that Dr. SHEIKH AHMED, 56, of Orange, waived his right to be indicted and pleaded guilty yesterday before U.S. District Judge Victor A. Bolden in Bridgeport to offenses related to his illegal prescribing of oxycodone, and his failure to pay federal withholding taxes.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Ahmed is a pediatrician who operated a medical practice, under the name East Hartford Medical Center, at 580 Burnside Avenue in East Hartford. Despite being a pediatrician, Ahmed’s practice did not only focus on children. Between December 2017 and May 2018, Ahmed prescribed controlled substances, including Oxycodone, to two individuals outside the scope of professional medical practice. The individuals paid Ahmed $500 to issue prescriptions for 30-day supplies of Oxycodone, and Ahmed agreed to increase the patients’ dosage in the future, without discussion as to the medical justification for the increase. Ahmed counseled the patients about the need to increase dosages gradually to avoid scrutiny from pharmacies regarding the prescribed medications. Ahmed also had the patients bypass normal financial intake procedures and took cash payments directly from the patients. Ahmed failed to perform sufficient examinations to assess the patients’ pain levels prior to issuing the prescriptions.
The investigation also revealed that Ahmed failed to pay over to the Internal Revenue Service $117,893 in employee withholding taxes from five of his businesses, including East Hartford Medical Center, between 2013 and 2016.
Ahmed pleaded guilty to one count of prescribing outside the scope of medical practice, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years, and one count of willful failure to pay withholding taxes, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of five years. A sentencing date is not scheduled.
Ahmed was arrested on a criminal complaint on November 28, 2018. He is released on a $200,000 bond pending sentencing.
This investigation is being conducted by the DEA’s New Haven Tactical Diversion Squad and the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division. The DEA Task Force includes officers from the Bristol, Milford, Monroe, New Haven, Shelton, Wallingford and Wilton Police Departments. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Anthony E. Kaplan and Christopher W. Schmeisser.