Former Las Vegas Doctor Sentenced To Over 3 1/2 Years In Prison For Selling Prescription Painkillers To Undercover DEA Agent
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Former Las Vegas physician Vinay Bararia, 44, was sentenced today to 44 months in prison and three years of supervised release for unlawfully selling hydrocodone and oxycodone to an undercover DEA agent in a hospital parking lot, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada.
“Stopping the unlawful distribution of prescription painkillers has been a top priority for our office,” said U.S. Attorney Bogden. “The days of persons being able to easily acquire these dangerous drugs from corrupt doctors and pharmacists are coming to an end.”
The sentence was imposed by U.S. District Judge Jennifer Dorsey, who also ordered Bararia to forfeit approximately $50,000 in cash and the 2007 Jaguar vehicle he used to distribute the drugs, and increased his sentence for abusing his position of trust as a doctor.
Judge Dorsey denied Bararia’s request for a reduced sentence based on arguments by his attorneys that he had diminished mental capacity, extenuating family circumstances, or that he acted aberrantly when he committed the crime.
Bararia was originally charged in March 2012, and pleaded guilty on Dec. 18, 2013, to one count of distribution of a controlled substance. According to the guilty plea agreement, on July 20, 2011, Bararia unlawfully sold 500 hydrocodone pills for $1125 to a DEA undercover agent in the parking lot of Centennial Hills Hospital. Bararia’s sentence included other relevant conduct, including the unlawful distribution of approximately 3,600 oxycodone pills between July 28 and Nov. 8, 2011, and the possession of 2,038 oxycodone pills that were recovered from his vehicle on March 1, 2012, when he was arrested in the parking lot of the hospital.
Bararia has been in federal custody since November 2012, as a result of repeated violations of his conditions of release. He surrendered his license to practice medicine in Nevada in March 2013.
This case was investigated by the DEA and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Susan Cushman and Robert Knief.