Four charged in Philadelphia pill mill scheme

Four charged in Philadelphia pill mill scheme

Four people, including two physicians, recently were charged in a suburban Philadelphia pill mill scheme that resulted in 85,000 tablets of oxycodone being prescribed with a street value of $2 million.

Dr. Mohanad Fallouh, Dr. Emmanuel Okolo, Evelyn Smith, and her cousin, Kent Hunter, were charged with several crimes, including identity theft, Medicaid fraud, corrupt organizations, and violating the Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act.

Fallouh and Okolo issued prescriptions for people they rarely, if ever, saw as patients, according to state Attorney General Josh Shapiro’s presentation to the 44th Statewide Investigating Grand Jury. Prescriptions were then filled by two pharmacies the patients had seldom, if not ever, visited.

“Stopping this group from peddling the prescriptions at the core of Pennsylvania’s opioid epidemic means we won a battle,” Shapiro said. “But the fight to stop this crisis continues, and we will find and stop other bad actors who choose to peddle sickness instead of health, and pocket illegal profits at the cost of peoples’ lives.”

Fallouh wrote 423 Oxycodone prescriptions for 71 individuals, and Okolo wrote 586 Oxycodone prescriptions for 114 individuals who lived in three properties Smith owned in Philadelphia, according to Pennsylvania’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. The prescriptions were written between January 2015 and September 2017.