Pharmacist Convicted On Drug Distribution Charges
1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
(304) 234-0100 ● Contact: Chris Zumpetta-Parr, Public Affairs Specialist
Defendant faces up to 44 years incarceration, will forfeit pharmacy license
CLARKSBURG, WEST VIRGINIA – A West Virginia pharmacist has been convicted on charges that he dispensed prescription painkillers outside the scope of his professional practice.
United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II announced that Mario BLOUNT, 51 of Bridgeport, W. Va., entered guilty pleas today to the felony offenses of “Conspiracy to Distribute Schedule II Controlled Substances”, “Distribution of Oxymorphone”, and “False or Fraudulent Material Omissions.”
BLOUNT, who was employed by Best Care Pharmacy at the time of the crimes, admitted that he conspired with Angela Davis and April Davis between 2011 and 2014 to distribute prescription painkillers for non-legitimate medical purposes. BLOUNT also admitted that he failed to report the filling of a prescription for oxymorphone for Angela Davis in June of 2013, and that he illegally distributed oxymorphone pills to her in September of 2013.
According to evidence offered at the plea hearing, BLOUNT’s pharmacy practice was outside the course of professional practice, leading to duplicate and excessive quantities of controlled substances being supplied. BLOUNT also supplied controlled substances that were contraindicated, and he accepted a prescription that he knew to be fraudulent for a person that he knew to be deceased. The decedent for whom the prescription was written was the late son of Angela Davis.
The investigation into BLOUNT began when it was discovered that he filled a significant number of prescriptions for patients of Dr. Edita Milan, a Bridgeport physician who is under Federal indictment on charges similar to BLOUNT’s. The Greater Harrison County Drug Task Force executed search warrants in October of 2013 at Best Care Pharmacy locations in the West Virginia towns of Bridgeport, Lumberport and Belington. The evidence gathered during those searches was used to bring charges against BLOUNT and his co-conspirators.
Angela Davis and April Davis, who are mother and daughter, are scheduled to be in court on September 23 for plea hearings. Milan is scheduled for trial on November 5.
As part of the plea agreement BLOUNT must relinquish his West Virginia Board of Pharmacy license and he is prohibited from applying for its reinstatement.
BLOUNT faces up to forty-four years in prison, a fine of up to $2,500,000, and three years of supervised release. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history of BLOUNT.
The Task Force includes agents and officers from the Bridgeport Police Department, the Clarksburg Police Department, the West Virginia State Police – Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI), and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John C. Parr with assistance from U.S. Attorney Ihlenfeld.
U.S. District Judge Irene Keeley presided.