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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Office Employee Fraudulently Used Employer's DEA Registration To Prescribe Controlled Substances To Self, Son And Son's Friends

Vicki Mullen Admitted To Diverting Prescription Drugs From Her Employer

ROANOKE, VIRGINIA – A Roanoke woman, who fraudulently used her employer’s DEA Registration Number to illegally prescribe controlled prescription drugs to her son, daughter-in-law, and others, pled guilty this morning in the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Roanoke.

Vicki Chilton Mullen, 63, of Roanoke, Va. and her son, Gregory Daniel Mullen, 39, of Vinton, Va., pled guilty today in District Court. Today in District Court, each defendant pled guilty to one count of distributing hydrocodone (Lortab), one count of distributing Ambien, one count of conspiring to distribute hydrocodone, one count of conspiring to distribute Ambien, one count of using a DEA registration number issued to another person, and one count of acquiring a controlled substance by misrepresentation or fraud. In addition, Gregory Keith Roach, 44, of Hurt, Va., pled guilty last week to one count of obtaining possession of a controlled substance through misrepresentation or fraud and one count of conspiracy to obtain controlled substances by fraud. Chastity Carter Mullen, 39, of Vinton, Va., wife of Gregory Daniel Mullen, also pled guilty last week to one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and to obtain controlled substances by fraud.

“The abuse of prescription drugs is an epidemic in the Western District of Virginia. The illegal use and abuse of these drugs is destroying lives and communities,” Acting United States Attorney Anthony P. Giorno said today. “We will continue to be vigilant in attacking this problem through vigorous enforcement and effective prevention programs.”

According to evidence presented at today’s guilty plea hearing by Assistant United States Attorney Jennie L.M. Waering, Vicki Mullen worked in a Roanoke podiatrist’s office from 2004 to 2012. By virtue of her position she had the access and ability to call in patient prescriptions to pharmacies and advising pharmacies of refill requests. From around December 2007 to August 2012, Vicki Mullen used the podiatrist’s DEA registration number to call in prescriptions and to fax prescriptions for hydrocodone (Lortab), Ambien and others drugs, to pharmacies for Greg Mullen, Chastity Mullen, Gregory Roach, and others. In addition, Gregory Mullen, and others, provided Vicki Mullen with the names and personal identifying information of individuals for the purpose of Vicki Mullen calling in unauthorized prescriptions in those persons’ names, without their knowledge. The unauthorized prescriptions were picked up at various locations by Vicki Mullen, Gregory Mullen, Chastity Mullen, Gregory Roach and others. Vicki Mullen, Greg Mullen and others were addicted to prescription drugs and used some of these prescriptions for personal use. Approximately 45 names were used unknowingly for this drug scheme.

Between 2008 and 2012, 127,686 pills of Lortab (hydrocodone) were dispensed by Vicki Mullen using her using employer’s DEA Registration Number to call-in prescriptions and to fax refill authorizations. During that same time, 5,370 Ambien pills were dispensed in the same manner.

In addition, David Brian Turner was also charged as part of the same conspiracy and is scheduled to plead guilty next week. Walter Bingham has also been charged and could face a March jury trial.

The investigation of the case was conducted by Tactical Diversion Squad of the Drug Enforcement Administration, which includes agents from the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, the Virginia State Police, the DEA Diversion Program, and Task Force law enforcement officers from local jurisdictions that include the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, Bedford County Sheriff’s Office, Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office, Washington County Sheriff’s Office and Roanoke County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Jennie L.W. Waering is prosecuting the case for the United States.

Updated April 14, 2015