Orlando Pharmacist Sentenced To More Than 24 Years For Illegally Dispensing Oxycodone
Orlando, Florida – United States District Judge Paul G. Byron has sentenced Valentine Okonkwo (54, Orlando) to 24 years and 4 months in federal prison for conspiracy to distribute and dispense oxycodone outside the usual course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose and for dispensing and distributing oxycodone outside the usual course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose. A federal jury found him guilty in March 2016.
According to evidence presented at trial, Okonkwo, a licensed pharmacist, dispensed more than 500,000 oxycodone pills during the timeframe of the conspiracy and collected over $1.3 million from illegal oxycodone sales. Okonkwo accepted fraudulent prescriptions from patients who had traveled long distances, and in groups, to get their oxycodone from his pharmacy, known as Avalon Park Pharmacy. The patients paid a premium, in cash, for the pain pills because they had fraudulent prescriptions and prescriptions from pill mill doctors. Avalon Park Pharmacy led the surrounding area in oxycodone distribution, including all of the major retail pharmacies. Many of the oxycodone pills were purchased by drug addicts and drug dealers who then sold the pills for up to $15 apiece on the streets. Okonkwo also had sex with several customers who had used fraudulent prescriptions at his pharmacy.
This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys James D. Mandolfo and Nathan W. Hill.