March 16, 2020
Contact: Jennifer Vann
Phone Number: 312-353-7875
Wisconsin Dentist Pleads Guilty to Oxycodone Diversion Charge
MADISON, WIS. – Assistant Special Agent in Charge Paul E. Maxwell and Scott C. Blader, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Christopher Kania, 40, Portage, Wisconsin, pled guilty on Thursday, March 12, in U.S. District Court in Madison to obtaining oxycodone by use of misrepresentation, fraud, and deception.
This charge carries a maximum penalty of four years in federal prison. Chief U.S. District Judge James D. Peterson scheduled Kania’s sentencing for May 26, 2020.
During the plea hearing, Kania admitted that on August 22, 2017, while working as a dentist in Mauston, Wisconsin, he wrote a prescription to his dental hygienist for oxycodone pills and asked her to fill the prescription and return the pills to him for his own use. His hygienist, who cooperated with the investigation, complied with his request, filled the prescription, and provided Kania with all of the oxycodone. Kania compensated her for the insurance co-pay.
“Dentists and their employees are trusted to handle pharmaceutical medications responsibly. When these practitioners divert potent pain medications for illegitimate purposes, they sabotage the public’s trust and safety within our communities. The DEA, partnered with local law enforcement and the U.S. Attorney’s Office, will continue to investigate and prosecute unscrupulous medical professionals,” remarked Milwaukee Drug Enforcement Administration Assistant Special Agent in Charge Paul E. Maxwell.
“Professionals who divert opioids fuel deadly addictions and undermine the public’s confidence in the medical community,” said U.S. Attorney Blader. “My office will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to prosecute opioid diversion cases to the fullest extent of the law.”
The charge against Kania was the result of an investigation conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration-Madison Office. The prosecution of the case has been handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Diane Schlipper.