September 19, 2014
Contact: Public Information Officer
SEP 19 (BROOKLYN, N.Y.) - Carmine G. Mandarano, a medical doctor whose practice is located in East Islip, New York, pleaded guilty today to the illegal distribution of oxycodone, a highly addictive prescription pain killer. Mandarano entered his plea before United States Magistrate Judge Gary R. Brown at the United States Courthouse located in Central Islip, New York. At sentencing, Mandarano faces a maximum of 20 years’ imprisonment and a $1 million fine. Mandarano has agreed to forfeit $150,000 in criminally-derived proceeds to the government.
The guilty plea was announced by Loretta E. Lynch, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; James J. Hunt, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), New York; and Tom F. O’Donnell, Special Agent in Charge, Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General (HHS/OIG), New York Regional Office.
“Medical professionals who hand out prescriptions for narcotics when there is no legitimate medical need to do so are drug dealers, pure and simple. Doctors who violate their oaths to do no harm, and the law, will continue to be held accountable,” Ms. Lynch said, extending her grateful appreciation to each of the law enforcement agencies for their assistance in this case.
During his plea, Mandarano admitted that in 2011 he issued a prescription for oxycodone to a patient that he knew was using illegal narcotics, had obtained multiple narcotics prescriptions from other medical professionals, and was abusing painkillers.
Oxycodone is a scheduled controlled substance that may be dispensed by medical professionals only for a legitimate medical purpose in the usual course of a doctor’s professional practice. It is a powerful and highly addictive drug and is increasingly abused because of its potency when crushed into a powder and ingested, leading to a heroin-like euphoria.
Mandarano’s guilty plea is the latest in a series of federal prosecutions by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York as part of the Prescription Drug Initiative. In January 2012, this Office and the DEA, in conjunction with the five District Attorneys in this jurisdiction, the Nassau and Suffolk County Police Departments, the New York City Police Department, and New York State Police, along with other key federal, state, and local government partners, launched the Prescription Drug Initiative to mount a comprehensive response to what the United States Department of Health and Human Services’ Center for Disease Control and Prevention has called an epidemic increase in the abuse of so-called opioid analgesics. So far, the Prescription Drug Initiative has brought over 160 federal and local criminal prosecutions, including the prosecution of 15 health care professionals, taken civil enforcement actions against a hospital, a pharmacy, and a pharmacy chain, removed prescription authority from numerous rogue doctors, and expanded information-sharing among enforcement agencies to better target and pursue drug traffickers. The Initiative also is involved in an extensive community outreach program to address the abuse of pharmaceuticals.
The investigation was conducted by the Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General (HHS/OIG), New York Regional Office and the DEA’s Long Island Division Office Tactical Diversion Squad which comprises agents and officers from the DEA, Nassau County Police Department, Rockville Centre Police Department, and Port Washington Police Department.
The government’s case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Lara Treinis Gatz.
Name: CARMINE G. MANDARANO
Residence: Northport, NY