Broadway Pharmacy Ordered to Pay $325,000
JUL 23 -- (SACRAMENTO, CA) - Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent in Charge Javier F. Peña and United States Attorney McGregor W. Scott announce that Broadway Pharmacy has agreed to pay $325,000 in a civil settlement. The parties reached this agreement in April 2007 and documents finalizing the settlement were executed earlier this month.
The DEA Sacramento Diversion Group and the Bureau of Narcotics Enforcement (BNE) began a criminal investigation into thefts from Broadway Pharmacy in August 2004. Broadway Pharmacy operates as a "closed door" pharmacy, meaning it is not open to the general public and there are no front counter retail sales. During the course of the investigation, Diversion Investigators conducted an accountability audit and learned that the pharmacy failed to account for approximately 30,000 tablets of Hydrocodone (Vicodin) and 10,000 tablets of Clonazepam (Valium). Furthermore, the audit uncovered over 2,800 recordkeeping deficiencies under the Code of Federal Regulations, in violation of the Controlled Substances Act, Title 21 United States Code. Based on these violations, the United States Attorney’s Office, through the assigned attorney AUSA Catherine Cerna, obtained settlement of civil penalties against Broadway Pharmacy in the amount of $325,000.
Controlled substance abuse is one of the biggest challenges before DEA at this time. Additionally, Hydrocodone is the most widely abused Schedule III pharmaceutical controlled substance in the United States today. From young people taking part in "pharming parties" to medical professionals, no segment of society is immune to this epidemic.
DEA Special Agent in Charge Javier F. Peña stated, "DEA's Diversion Control Group is dedicated to holding pharmacies, and the individuals who operate them, accountable for the controlled substances they dispense. This sends a message to those individuals that keeping accurate inventories, records and documentation is part of that process."
“There is a growing awareness that abuse of prescription drugs is a significant societal problem. Pharmacies must take great care to ensure that controlled substances do not end up in the wrong hands. This settlement underscores the federal commitment to holding accountable dispensaries of controlled substances,” said McGregor W. Scott, United States Attorney.
Details of the settlement agreement show that from June 2003 through August 2004, Broadway Pharmacy violated the Controlled Substances Act as follows:
This settlement agreement was reached through the United States Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of California on behalf of the Drug Enforcement Administration and Broadway LTC Pharmacy.