West Virginia physician sentenced for illegal opioid distribution to patients
CLARKSBURG, WEST VIRGINIA— Dr. Felix Brizuela, Jr., of Harrison City, Pennsylvania, was sentenced today to 48 months incarceration for illegally distributing opioids, United States Attorney Bill Powell announced.
Following a six-day trial in January 2019, the jury found Brizuela, age 58, guilty of 15 counts of “Distribution of Controlled Substances Outside the Bounds of Professional Medical Practice.” The jury acquitted Brizuela of anti-kickback counts and six other distribution counts in the indictment.
The controlled substances illegally distributed by Brizuela included Oxycodone, Fentanyl, and Oxymorphone. They were distributed without legitimate medical purpose and outside the scope of professional practice in Monongalia County, West Virginia between 2013 and 2015.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sarah E. Wagner and Robert H. McWilliams, Jr. prosecuted the case on behalf of the government. The Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Office of Inspector General at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, WV Offices of the Insurance Commissioner Fraud Division, WV Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, Office of Ohio Attorney General Health Care Fraud, Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, the Hancock-Brook-Weirton Drug Task Force, a HIDTA-funded initiative, the Greater Harrison County Drug Task Force, a HIDTA-funded initiative, West Virginia State Police, the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office, and the Weirton Police Department investigated.
Senior U.S. District Judge Irene M. Keeley presided.