News Release
February 21, 2008
Contact: Jodie Underwood
Number: (206) 553-5443

Seattle Doctor Sentenced To 22 Months For Illegal Steroid Distribution 

FEB 21 -- (Seattle, WA) – DEA Special Agent in Charge (SAC) Arnold R. Moorin and the United States Attorney for the Western District of Washington, Jeffrey Sullivan, announced that Howard J. Levine of Seattle, Washington was sentenced in U.S District Court to 22 months in prison for Distribution of Controlled Substances. 


According to court records, Levine used his prescription-writing authority to sell anabolic steroids and other powerful and potentially dangerous medications to subjects without making any determination that the drugs were needed for legitimate medical purposes.   As part of the investigation, an undercover agent entered Levine’s medical office and requested steroids.  Levine provided the undercover with the steroids without ascertaining any medical history, or any information that would indicate whether the drugs were needed for legitimate medical purposes.  On June 26, 2007, Levine was arrested and later pleaded guilty.


Prosecutors submitted to the court a sentencing memorandum and told the court that there was little about Levine’s office that resembled a typical physician’s office.  Specifically, prosecutors wrote, “there were no patient charts and the examination room featured a pool table.   While a refrigerator in a legitimate medical office might contain medications that needed to be kept cool, the refrigerator in Dr. Levine’s office contained beer.”  Assistant United States Attorney Mark Parrent noted that Levine abdicated his professional responsibility as a physician.  Levine sold the drugs to some people knowing they were going to provide them to others who had no medical evaluation at all.  Levine has since surrendered his DEA registration to prescribe controlled substances. 


The investigation was conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Seattle Police Department.