Charleston Doctor Sentenced to Over Five Years in Federal Prison for Illegal Distribution of Methadone
CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A Charleston doctor who practiced at Neurology & Pain Center, PLLC was sentenced to prison for illegal distribution of controlled substances that were not for legitimate medical purposes, announced United States Attorney Mike Stuart. Muhammed Samer Nasher-Alneam, 48, was sentenced to 63 months in prison for writing prescriptions in July 2014 for methadone pills that were not within the bounds of professional medical practice or for legitimate medical purposes. Nasher also will be on supervised release following his incarceration for a period of three years. As a result of this conviction, Nasher agreed to permanently surrender both his medical license and DEA registration. He further agreed to never seek reinstatement of a license to practice as a medical doctor in any other state. As part of his plea agreement, Nasher agreed to forfeit $149,480.75 and an Acura RDX Sport Utility Vehicle.
“As I’ve said before, a drug dealer in a lab coat is still just a drug dealer,” said United States Attorney Mike Stuart. “This drug dealer will not only be losing his freedom for more than five years, he is losing his medical license- FOREVER. Nasher will never practice medicine again – not in West Virginia or any other state.”
Nasher has been in custody since his arrest on July 27, 2018.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Department of Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General, the Department of Labor – Office of Inspector General, the West Virginia State Police and the West Virginia Insurance Commission conducted the investigation. Senior United States District Judge David A. Faber imposed the sentence. Assistant United States Attorneys Alan McGonigal, Jennifer Herrald and Steve Loew, and former Assistant United States Attorneys C. Haley Bunn and Meredith Thomas handled the prosecution.
This case was prosecuted by the Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit (OFADU), a Department of Justice initiative that uses data to identify and prosecute individuals that are contributors to the national opioid crisis. The Southern District of West Virginia is one of 12 districts nationally to participate in the pilot program. OFADU is an integral part of the United States Attorney’s Healthcare Fraud Abuse, Recovery and Response Team (ARREST), an innovative approach utilizing criminal and civil enforcement efforts in a comprehensive attack on the opioid epidemic and healthcare fraud. This case was also part of the Appalachian Regional Opioid (ARPO) Strike Force which is made up of prosecutors and data analysts with the HCF Unit, prosecutors with the ten U.S. Attorney’s Offices in the region, and special agents with the FBI, HHS-OIG and DEA.