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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Michigan

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, January 24, 2022

Podiatrist Pleas Guilty in Sex for Drugs Diversion Scheme

DETROIT - A local podiatrist entered a guilty plea today to a two count Information charging unlawfully distribution of controlled substances for his involvement in a sex-for-drugs diversion scheme, announced United States Attorney Dawn N. Ison.

Ison was joined in the announcement by Acting Special Agent in Charge Kent Kleinschmidt , U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, Detroit Field Division, Acting Special Agent in Charge James C. Harris, Homeland Security Investigations, Detroit Division, and Mario M. Pinto, Special Agent in Charge of the Chicago Region of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General.

Dr. Maninder Deswal, 44, of Lansing, was charged with unlawfully prescribing Oxycodone-Acetaminophen (Percocet) and Hydrocodone-Acetaminophen (Norco), highly addictive opioids, to various women outside the course of professional medical practice. From December 2018 to September 2020, Dr. Deswal would issue controlled substance prescriptions to women in exchange for cash payments, sexual favors, and/or other illicit drugs. These women were not patients and issuing them prescriptions was not for legitimate medical purposes, but rather personal consumption and further drug diversion.

A sentencing date has been set for May 24, 2022 at 3:30 pm before United States District Judge Judith Levy.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Brandy R. McMillion. McMillion serves as the District’s Opioid Fraud Abuse and Detection Prosecutor as well as the Deputy-Chief of the Health Care Fraud Unit. The Opioid Fraud Abuse and Detection Unit is a Department of Justice initiative designating twelve special prosecutors across the country to focus on prosecuting medical professionals that are contributing to the nation’s opioid crisis.

The case was investigated by special agents and diversion investigators with the Homeland Security Investigations, the Drug Enforcement Administration and Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General along with assistance from the Ypsilanti Police Department and Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Updated January 24, 2022