Owner of West Suburban Weight Loss Center Indicted in Scheme to Illegally Dispense Appetite-Suppressant Drugs
CHICAGO — The owner of a Lombard weight-loss center and a Burr Ridge physician have been charged with conspiracy and other crimes related to dispensing appetite-suppressant drugs without a legitimate medical purpose.
According to a 17-count federal indictment, MICHAEL JENNINGS, the owner of Results Weight Loss Center, made cash payments to the doctor in exchange for using the physician’s federal registration number to order and dispense hundreds of thousands of dosages of Phendimetrazine and Phentermine. The physician, WILLIAM MIKAITIS, was rarely present at the weight-loss center, according to the indictment. Instead, Jennings, who is not a doctor and lacks medical training, identified himself to patients as “Dr. Mikaitis” and ordered the prescriptions without conducting meaningful examinations or tests, the indictment states.
The indictment alleges that between approximately February 2013 and January 2015, Jennings made cash deposits of approximately $75,000 into Mikaitis’ bank account. The indictment seeks a total forfeiture from the defendants of approximately $790,000 in illegal proceeds from the scheme.
The indictment was returned yesterday in federal court in Chicago. It charges Jennings, 48, of Naperville, and Mikaitis, 72, of Burr Ridge, with one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances outside the course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose, seven counts of distributing controlled substances outside the course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose, seven counts of dispensing prescription drugs without a valid prescription, and one count of conspiracy to conduct a financial transaction involving the proceeds of unlawful activity. The counts are punishable by a maximum combined sentence of 95 years in prison.
Mikaitis, who maintains a medical practice in Lockport, is also charged individually with one count of engaging in a monetary transaction involving criminally derived property valued at more than $10,000. This count carries a maximum sentence of ten years in prison.
Jennings and Mikaitis will be arraigned before U.S. District Judge Virginia M. Kendall on June 9, 2016, at 9:30 a.m.
The indictment was announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Dennis A. Wichern, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration; and James D. Robnett, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division in Chicago. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Chicago Office and the Naperville Police Department assisted in the investigation, which was conducted under the umbrella of the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF).
The public is reminded that an indictment is not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal statutes and the advisory United States Sentencing Guidelines.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider.