May 15, 2013
Contact: Special Agent Sharon Santiago
Phone Number: (312) 353-0442
Dekalb And Sterling Doctor And His Wife Charged With Illegally Dispensing Prescription Drugs And Income Tax Fraud
ROCKFORD, Ill. - A DeKalb, Illinois doctor and his wife were arrested today on charges of illegally dispensing controlled substances and federal income tax fraud. Richard H. Ng, 61, a doctor of osteopathic medicine, and president and sole shareholder of Sauk Medical Clinic with offices located in Sterling and DeKalb, Illinois, was charged by a federal grand jury in Rockford yesterday in an 89 count indictment, including one count of conspiracy to dispense controlled substances outside the course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose, 81 counts of dispensing controlled substances outside the course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose, and seven counts of income tax fraud. Lee Lee Foong, 54, also known as “Audrey,” who is married to Ng, was charged with one count of conspiracy to illegally dispense controlled substances outside the course of professional practice and without a legitimate purpose, five counts of dispensing controlled substances outside the course of professional practice and without a legitimate legal purpose, and one count of income tax fraud.
According to the indictment, Ng owned and operated the Sauk Medical Clinic, and Foong was the office manager for the Clinic. Beginning in January 2007 and continuing through October 2011, Ng and Foong allegedly dispensed Oxycodone, Methadone, Morphine, and other prescription pain medications outside the course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose, the dispensation of which in some cases resulted in death and other bodily injuries. During the course of the conspiracy, Ng saw patients at Sauk Medical Clinic’s offices in Sterling and DeKalb on at least a monthly or bi-weekly basis to dispense large quantities of prescription controlled substances. The indictment alleges Ng failed to conduct adequate medical evaluations, increased the dosage amounts, and required patients to return frequently to Ng to obtain excessive amounts of the controlled substances. According to the indictment, Ng continued to issue prescriptions despite obvious “red flags” that his patients were abusing or misusing the controlled substances. The indictment alleges that Ng continued to prescribe excessive amounts of controlled substances knowing that these dispensations resulted in the death of three of his patients.
The indictment also alleges that Ng filed false U.S. corporate income tax returns for Sauk Medical Clinic for 2008-2010, knowing the returns underestimated gross receipts of Sauk Medical Clinic by a total of $922,850 over those years, which would have resulted in additional federal income tax due of $320,738. It is further alleged that false federal individual tax returns were filed by Ng for the calendar years 2008-2010, and by Ng and Foong for 2011, the year they were married, which failed to report a total of $1,256,486 in cash received from Sauk Medical Clinic and rental receipts. The indictment charges that the unreported income would have resulted in additional federal income tax due of $270,873.
Depending on the controlled substance involved, each charge of illegally dispensing a controlled substance carries a maximum penalty from up to 5 years in prison to a maximum penalty of life imprisonment in cases of death or serious bodily injury, in addition to a fine ranging from $250,000 to $1 million. Each count of filing a false income tax return carries a maximum penalty up to 3 years in prison, or a fine of up to $100,000 for an ($500,000 for a corporation), or both, as well as the costs of prosecution. If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under the advisory United States Sentencing Guidelines.
The public is reminded that an indictment contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. Each defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
The arrests were announced by Gary S. Shapiro, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Jack Riley, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration; and James C. Lee, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the Internal Revenue Service - Criminal Investigation Division. The Sterling, Ill. Police Department assisted in the investigation.
“Those in the medical profession, like Dr. Ng and his wife, who allegedly abuse their position of trust and prescribe drugs without any legitimate medical purpose, will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” said Jack Riley, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division.
The government is being represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott R. Paccagnini.