Pain Doctor Pleads Guilty To Using Patient Names Fraudulently To Obtain Controlled Substances

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Picture: Carlos Johnson

BUFFALO, N.Y. – U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Dr. Paul Biddle, 54, of Amherst, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford to identity theft and possession of unlawful hydromorphone HCL. The charges carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael J. Adler, who is handling the case, stated that Biddle was an anesthesiologist and pain management doctor who also operated a medical marijuana practice. Between February 9, 2015 and October 16, 2017, the defendant was prescribing controlled substances for two deceased patients. Biddle knew the patients were deceased and used their names and dates of birth knowingly and without lawful authority to obtain controlled substances for himself.

After the death of one of the patients, Biddle wrote 10 prescriptions using the deceased patient’s name and date of birth between November 21, 2016 and October 16, 2017. All of these prescriptions were filled by a pharmacy in Tampa, FL, and shipped directly to the defendant’s home or office. After the death of the second patient, the defendant wrote 23 prescriptions using that deceased patient’s name and date of birth between February 9, 2015 and August 7, 2017. All of these prescriptions were also filled by a pharmacy in Tampa, FL, and shipped directly to the defendant’s home or office. Biddle was obtaining these prescriptions and using them himself.

The plea is the result of an investigation by Special Agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Ray Donovan, New York Field Division; the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Western New York Healthcare Fraud Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Gary Loeffert; the New York State Department of Financial Services, under the direction of Maria T. Vullo, Superintendent of Financial Services; Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, Office of Investigations, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Scott Lampert; and the Amherst Police Department, under the direction of Chief John Askey.

Sentencing is scheduled for May 9, 2019, at 11:00 a.m. before Judge Wolford.

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