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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Ohio

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 2, 2018

14 Charged with Making Fake Prescriptions to Obtain & Distribute Codeine Cough Syrups

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Law enforcement officials arrested seven individuals today in “Operation Purple Drank.” Fourteen total were previously indicted by a federal grand jury on charges unsealed today of conspiring to distribute codeine-promethazine, obtaining controlled substances by fraud and illegally using DEA registration numbers. Four defendants are already in custody on prior charges and three have not yet been apprehended.

Benjamin C. Glassman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, and Timothy J. Plancon, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), announced the charges.

This investigation began when law enforcement officials with the Wooster Police Department, MEDWAY Drug Enforcement Agency in Wayne County and Parma Police Department identified multiple fictitious prescriptions.

In addition, the Warren County Drug Task Force, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Delaware County Sheriff’s Office, Hocking County Major Crimes Unit and the Columbus, Dublin and Gahanna police departments also investigated this case.

According to the indictment, from January 2016 until February 2017, the co-conspirators allegedly created a significant number of fraudulent and forged prescriptions for codeine-promethazine syrup. It is also alleged that individuals were recruited to travel from Columbus, Ohio to various pharmacies in Ohio to fill the fake prescriptions.

Those charged include:

Name

Age

City

Mohamed A. Mohamed

25

Grove City

Sade S. Abdisaliis

21

Columbus

Abulkadir A. Yusuf

28

Columbus

Siyad A. Haji

26

Columbus

Mahdi H. Mohamed

23

Columbus

Abdirashid M. Ahmed

24

Columbus

Liban A. Hassan

25

Columbus

Alinoor S. Alinoor

23

Gahanna

Samatar A. Haji

23

Columbus

Ibrahim A. Shoble

29

Columbus

Abdifahi H. Abdirizak

21

Columbus

Ismail C. Cusmaan

22

Columbus

Alla-Magan M. Gani

21

Columbus

Mohamed H. Hashi

25

Columbus

The 17-count indictment includes 13 counts of obtaining substances by fraud. It also includes use of a fictitious DEA registration number and use of another’s DEA registration number.

U.S. Attorney Glassman commended the cooperative investigation of this case by federal, state and local law enforcement, including the assistance of more than 25 police departments statewide, as well as Assistant United States Attorney David J. Bosley, who is prosecuting the case.

An indictment merely contains allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law.

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Topic(s): 
Prescription Drugs
Component(s): 
Contact: 
jennifer.thornton@usdoj.gov
Updated May 2, 2018