The criminal defense lawyers at The Law Offices of Mark L. Horwitz defend doctors and pharmacists, pharmacies and clinics, as well as patients who have been arrested and charged with prescription drug fraud.
Prescription drug fraud can take a number of forms. It can include:
- Overcharging Medicare and Medicaid for prescription drugs
- Selling drugs or marketing drugs for purposes other than those approved by the FDA (pharmaceutical fraud)
- Providing kickbacks to doctors or clinics in return for prescribing certain medications or for writing prescriptions when patients do not need the medication
- Creating fake prescriptions in order to obtain more of a legal narcotic than allowed
- Doctor shopping in order to get multiple prescriptions of a controlled drug, which can then be sold illegally (this is common with painkillers)
While the American justice system does not allow you to be twice put in jeopardy in a criminal court for the same crime, you can be tried in both criminal and civil court. In a criminal case, you face the possibility of prison, as well as financial penalties. In a civil case, you face financial penalties and potential loss of your professional license.
In a civil RICO case, the "victim" may sue for treble damages, plus attorney fees. Depending upon the nature of the crime, the loss of a civil case could cost you millions of dollars. If a jury returns a verdict against you in a civil RICO case, the state licensing agency may seek to revoke your professional license.
You Could Face Civil Penalties Even if You Are Not Convicted of a Crime
Even if you are found "not guilty" in criminal court, an alleged victim can bring a civil RICO case seeking financial compensation or restitution for monetary losses, damage to reputation or loss of business as a result of your actions.
The challenge is significant because the burden of proof in a civil case is much less than in a criminal case. In a criminal case, the jury must find you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. In a civil case, a jury can arrive at a conviction based on "a preponderance of the evidence." In other words, the jury only has to believe that it is more likely than not that you committed the crime in order to find against you.
Defense For Doctors Charged With Prescription Drug Crimes
"Pill-mill" is a term used to describe a doctor's office where patients obtain inordinate quantities or types of prescription drugs. For many years, prescription drug charges were very rare in our criminal courts because they are complicated, difficult cases for the government to bring. In recent years, however, these charges have become well-documented, and the penalties are becoming increasingly severe.
Our Florida criminal defense attorneys stand willing to represent people who have been charged with prescription drug crimes that include:
- Over-prescribing drugs
- Improperly documenting patient history
- Failing to check patient records for instances of "doctor shopping"
- Accepting bribes from patients for prescribing unneeded medications
- Ignoring obvious risks of addictive potential in patients
Contact Our Prescription Drug Defense Law Firm
It is critical to obtain legal counsel as soon as possible. Even if you have not been arrested or charged, contact us. The sooner you obtain our legal counsel, the more we can do to help you with pre-trial representation. We strive to end the investigation before it results in arrest or formal charge, thereby leaving the client's record free from the stain of a criminal arrest and the embarrassment of such a public accusation.
We have our phones answered 24 hours a day, so that we can respond quickly to legal emergencies. Call our Florida office or contact us online to speak with a lawyer about your prescription drug charges.