Doctor Pleads Guilty to Running Pill Mill
DEL RIO – A Carrizo Springs doctor pleaded guilty today to charges he ran a “pill-mill” by providing patients with unlawful prescriptions.
According to court documents, Dr. Alfonso Luevano, 52, admitted that he conducted appointments with patients that did not meet the accepted standard of care in which he prescribed controlled substances including hydrocodone, alprazolam, and tramadol. Undercover officers conducted multiple visits with the doctor, captured on audio/video recording, in which he prescribed controlled substances with almost no medical evaluation. The defendant also admitted that he pre-signed prescription pads and allowed his staff and employees to use them to create controlled substance prescriptions without him seeing the patient at all.
Luevano pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison. He is set for sentencing on July 27, 2022. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Co-Defendant Ofelia Martinez, 53, also of Carrizo Springs, previously pleaded guilty on November 22, 2021 to conspiracy to commit health care fraud. The office manager and biller for Luevano’s practice, Martinez admitted to overbilling Texas Medicaid by listing Luevano as the providing practitioner on office visits when he had not seen the patient. Instead, the patients were seen by mid-level practitioners who were instructed to leave the medical record file open. The file was then later closed using Dr. Luevano’s account, resulting in a fraudulent medical record which listed Dr. Luevano as the provider. Martinez faces up to 10 years in prison and her sentencing is currently set for May 25, 2022.
U.S. Attorney Ashley C. Hoff of the Western District of Texas and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent in Charge Daniel Comeaux made the announcement.
The DEA Prescription Drug Diversion Task Force, DEA Del Rio, and the Texas Attorney General Medicaid Fraud Control Unit are investigating the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Justin Chung and Joshua Banister are prosecuting the case.