DEA agents serve warrants at pain management clinic and arrest naturopathic medical doctor
PHOENIX – The Drug Enforcement Administration Phoenix Field Division, along with the Arizona Attorney General’s Office, announce the arrest of naturopathic medical doctor Jelina Ip and her mother, Alane Ip, following the execution of state-authorized warrants yesterday morning in Tempe. The Ips were owners and operators of Ava Pain Management, formerly known as White Cranes Medical Center, and allegedly responsible for over-prescribing Schedule II controlled substances, including oxycodone and morphine.
“Medical doctors who abuse their prescribing privileges betray the communities they are supposed to protect, feed the opioid epidemic currently devastating the country and potentially destroy families,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Doug Coleman. “The DEA and our law enforcement partners are committed to the identification of these rogue practitioners and bringing them to face justice in Arizona and throughout the nation.”
The DEA began its investigation into White Cranes Medical Center in October 2017 and subsequently served a search warrant in June 2018. During the execution of the warrant, law enforcement officials discovered the Ips were physically living at the medical center, sectioning “living space” within the facility. Following the initial investigation, Dr. Ip was served with an Immediate Suspension Order (ISO) by DEA agents and investigators, eliminating her ability to prescribe controlled substances. An analysis of 18 months’ of prescribing had revealed the clinic issued prescriptions in excess of 1.6 million dosage units, of which 1.4 million (85 percent) were opioids. The business name was later changed to Ava Pain Management.
The Phoenix DEA agents were joined by the Arizona Attorney General’s Office throughout the investigation and received additional operational support yesterday from the Arizona Department of Public Safety. The Ips face dozens of criminal charges including, fraud schemes, illegally conducting an enterprise, illegal administration of a narcotic and illegal administration of a dangerous drug.
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