Doctor at L5 Pain Clinic Pleads Guilty to Illegal Drug Dispensing Conspiracy
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Virginia
Wendell Randall Rented Out his Credentials to Prescribe Suboxone
ROANOKE, Va. – A doctor from North Carolina, who was assigned to several pain clinics in Virginia but was rarely physically on-site at any of them, pled guilty this week in U.S. District Court in the Western District of Virginia.
Wendell Lewis Randall, 70, of Millers Creek, North Carolina, conspired with others to use, in the course of dispensing and distributing controlled substances, a DEA registration number issued to another person. DEA registration numbers are unique identifiers issued to medical providers in order to track who issues drug prescriptions and to ensure only qualified providers prescribe controlled substances.
According to court documents, between 2017 and 2020, Randall—a medical doctor who operated his own practice in North Carolina—was affiliated with L5 Medical Holdings, doing business as Pain Care Centers, an LLC operating pain clinics in Woodlawn, Lynchburg, Madison Heights, Blacksburg, and Christiansburg.
Randall was nominally assigned to the Woodlawn clinic, but he was only occasionally ever on-site. He was also absent from the Christiansburg and Madison Heights clinics, where Randall allowed other, unqualified medical providers to use his DEA registration number to prescribe Suboxone (buprenorphine) in his name, even though he had not seen the patients who received the drugs.
Court documents, including text messages, show L5 paid Randall in exchange for using his DEA registration number. Randall also acknowledged in these messages that he was not seeing patients at L5’s clinics and that he was aware his arrangement with L5 was illegal.
United States Attorney Christopher R. Kavanaugh, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA’s Washington Division, Jared Forget, Special Agent in Charge of HHS-OIG’s Philadelphia Region, Maureen Dixon, Superintendent of the Virginia State Police Col. Gary Settle, and Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares made the announcement today.
The Drug Enforcement Administration, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – Office of the Inspector General, the Virginia State Police, and the Virginia Attorney General’s Office - Medicaid Fraud Control Unit investigated the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys S. Cagle Juhan, Jason M. Scheff, and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Janine M. Myatt, Assistant Attorney General with the Virginia Attorney General’s Office, prosecuted the case.
Updated November 17, 2023