A Rockland County physician was indicted today for allegedly selling millions of dollars worth of prescription narcotics out of his offices, Attorney General Eric Scheiderman announced, Gannett’s Haley Viccaro reports.
Dr. David Brizer, a Rockland County and Manhattan-based physician, was hit today with a 55-count indictment against him on charges of selling prescription oxycodone and other pain medications to drug dealers, Schneiderman said.
“Instead of saving lives, Dr. Brizer used his position to supply drug dealers and feed a prescription-drug epidemic that is devastating families across our state,” Schneiderman said in a statement.
Brizer, 60, allegedly charged customers $300 for prescriptions and illegally sold several millions of dollars worth of pills, Schneiderman said. He first sold prescriptions out of his Nyack office on 48 Burd Street and more recently sold them out of his Manhattan office on 244 West 54th Street, he said.
Brizer allegedly sold the fraudulent prescriptions to drug dealer Franklin Walker and others over a two-year period until July 2012, Schneiderman said. Brizer allegedly gave Walker about 240 oxycodone pills at a time. Walker, 52, was arrested in December on drug possession and grand larceny charges and faces up to nine years in prison.
The physician was also charged with possessing controlled substances, which he obtained by writing prescriptions under people’s names who had no knowledge of his actions. He also wrote fraudulent prescriptions for fake patients.
The indictment against Brizer includes charges for underreporting his income by about $500,000 on his state tax returns in 2010 and 2011.
Brizer, 60, was arraigned in Rockland County Court today on two counts of criminal tax fraud, 34 counts of criminal sale of a prescription for a controlled substance, 15 counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance and 2 counts of offering a false instrument for filing. He also faces scheme to defraud and conspiracy charges.
In August 2012, the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Unit, with the help of the state Department of Health’s Bureau of Narcotics Enforcement and the Department of Taxation and Finance, executed search warrants in Brizer’s Manhattan office and residence, Schneiderman said.
“The message is clear – whether you are a doctor or a criminal on the street, my office will prosecute those profiting off the cycle of abuse,” Schneiderman said in a statement. “This office will use every tool at our disposal to bring criminal charges against those who line their own pockets by fueling dangerous addictions and illegally trafficking in prescription narcotics.”
A secretary at Brizer’s last-known office in Nyack said he no longer works there. Attempts to immediately reach him were unsuccessful.