June 16, 2016
Contact: SA Timothy Desmond
Phone Number: 617-557-2100
New Haven Man Pleads Guilty To Role In Scheme To Obtain Oxycodone Through Fraudulent Prescriptions
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Michael J. Ferguson Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Raymond Morales, also known as “Freddy,” 32, of New Haven, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson in Hartford to one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute oxycodone.
According to court documents and statements made in court, in 2012, members of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Haven Tactical Diversion Squad began an investigation into a drug trafficking organization that manufactured fraudulent prescriptions for oxycodone and distributed the drug in the greater New Haven area. As part of the conspiracy, members of organization obtained the personal identifying information of medical practitioners and used the information to create fraudulent prescriptions. Conspiracy members also purchased legitimate prescriptions for oxycodone from individuals. The organization then used individuals, or “runners,” to fill the fraudulent prescriptions at pharmacies throughout Connecticut. Once a runner provided his or her personal information to a member of the organization, the runner’s information was kept on file and used to create other fraudulent prescriptions.
The investigation revealed that, between February 2013 and September 2015, the organization stole the personal identifying information of more than 50 doctors and medical professionals and fraudulently obtained more than 80,000 oxycodone pills. Nearly all of the runners employed by the conspiracy held state-sponsored medical insurance, so the costs of the prescriptions were billed to Medicaid. Members of the drug trafficking organization then sold the oxycodone for $20 to $30 per 30 milligram pill. Morales recruited runners to fill fraudulent prescriptions. The investigation also revealed that he had a close associate who was employed as a pharmacy technician at a pharmacy in New Haven and assisted Morales in filling the fake prescriptions. Judge Thompson scheduled sentencing for October 11, 2016, at which time Morales faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years. A total of 11 individuals have been charged as a result of the investigation. Four of the defendants have previously pleaded guilty and also await sentencing.
The DEA Tactical Diversion Squad includes members from the New Haven, Hamden, Greenwich, Shelton, Bristol, Vernon, Wilton and Milford Police Departments.