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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Former Medical Practice Employee Charged With Stealing Controlled Substances

CONTACT: Barbara Burns
PHONE: (716) 843-5817
FAX #: (716) 551-3051

ROCHESTER, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Shannon Lambert, 33, of Canandaigua, NY, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with obtaining controlled substances by fraud. The charge carries a maximum penalty of four years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean C. Eldridge, who is handling the case, stated that according to the complaint, between January 2018 and February 2019, Lambert worked at Cornerstone Eye Associates in Rochester, NY. As part of her employment, the defendant had access to an electronic prescription program which doctors at Cornerstone used to write and submit prescriptions to pharmacies on behalf of their patients. Lambert fraudulently accessed the program by logging in as a doctor who worked at Cornerstone, and then used the program to issue prescriptions for Schedule II and III controlled substances to herself and others who were not Cornerstone patients. These substances included Vicodin, Hydrocodone, and Oxycodone. Investigators reviewed prescription records and identified 73 fraudulent prescriptions issued by the defendant, totaling approximately 5,048 prescription pills. All such prescriptions were issued without the knowledge or authorization of a doctor, and were issued by Lambert without a legitimate medical purpose.   

The defendant made an initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Marian W. Payson, and was released on conditions.  Further proceedings in this case are scheduled before Judge Payson on May 10, 2019, at 9:00 a.m.

The criminal complaint is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Ray Donovan, New York Field Division.

The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.  

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Topic(s): 
Prescription Drugs
Updated April 16, 2019