September 24, 2013
Contact: Public Information Officer
Phone Number: (954) 660-4500
Pasco County Pharmacist Sentenced For Illegally Distributing Pain Medications
TAMPA, Fla. - Mark R. Trouville, Special Agent in (SAC), Drug Enforcement (DEA), Miami Field Division, and A. Lee Bentley, III, Acting United States Attorney for the Middle District of Florida, announces that United States District Judge Susan Bucklew today sentenced Edward Benjamin Alister (59, Pasco County) to four years in federal prison for distributing oxycodone. As part of his sentence, the court also entered a money judgment in the amount of $175,000 from the criminal proceeds. Beckles was also ordered to serve a two-year term of supervised release. Beckles pleaded guilty on March 26, 2013.
In 2010, according to court documents the DEA and the Pasco County Sheriff’s (PCSO) began an investigation to identify members of a large oxycodone distribution ring. As a result of the investigation, 33 individuals were arrested and prosecuted.
From August 2009 through January 2012, individuals obtained fraudulent prescriptions for oxycodone and had them filled at Ed’s Family Friendly Pharmacy in New Port Richey. Beckles, a licensed pharmacist and owner of the pharmacy, filled the prescriptions knowing they were fraudulent. During the investigation, Beckles provided investigators with a computer printout that showed the pharmacy made in excess of $130,000 in a 45-day period from the illegal sale of oxycodone. Approximately 210 fraudulent prescriptions, each for 270 pills, were filled in the 45-day period.
This investigation was conducted by the DEA and the PCSO as part of the Pill Nation initiative. SAC Trouville commended the prosecution efforts of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District.