Wisconsin Doctor Sentenced to 18 Months’ Imprisonment for Drug Crimes
MILWAUKEE – John G. McGarry, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of Drug Enforcement Administration-Wisconsin, and U.S. Attorney Gregory J. Haanstad of the Eastern District of Wisconsin announced that on Oct. 27, 2022, Dr. Manuel Thomas, 49, a former pediatrician, had been sentenced by U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman to 18 months in federal prison for conspiring to unlawfully distribute controlled substances and maintaining a premises for the purpose of unlawfully distributing controlled substances.
According to court records, Thomas previously had pled guilty to both counts, acknowledging that he had distributed controlled substances, including powerful opiates, for years, in a manner outside of a professional medical practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose.
At sentencing, the United States requested that the Court impose a term of imprisonment based on a variety of factors, including evidence that Dr. Thomas had provided opiates to patients he knew were already addicted to controlled substances, in exchange for cash and pills for his own personal use.
“Medical professionals who prescribe controlled substances not for a medical purpose but instead to line their own pockets violate both their oaths to do no harm and also federal law,” said U.S. Attorney Haanstad. “The United States Attorney’s Office remains committed to working with our federal, state, and local partners to hold those doctors who are fueling the opioid crisis accountable for their actions.”
“The DEA will continue keeping Wisconsin families safe from the dangerous and illegal actions taken by medical practitioners who do not adhere to the Controlled Substances Act,” said DEA Wisconsin ASAC McGarry.
“The FBI takes medical misconduct very seriously,” said Special Agent in Charge Michael Hensle. “Along with our partners, we will aggressively pursue offenders who take advantage of vulnerable patients for their own personal gain.”
After completing his term of imprisonment, Thomas also must spend three years on federal supervised release.
This matter was investigated by the DEA and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin Knight.