San Diego County Pair to Appear in Court to Face Unlicensed Practice of Medicine Charges

A San Diego woman and physician will appear before the San Diego County Superior Court on May 19, 2015 for a preliminary hearing to face charges involving the unlicensed practice of medicine.

The San Diego County District Attorney’s Office alleged that between September and December 2013 Suzanne Suarez falsely represented herself as a Physician Assistant. Suarez does not possess a Physician Assistant’s license and was engaging in illegal activity by performing services she is not licensed to perform. She is also accused of writing prescriptions, and examining and diagnosing patients while employed at Carlsbad Orthopedic Group.

Dr. Jon Pembroke Kelly, who employed Suarez at the Carlsbad Orthopedic Group, is accused of conspiring with her and aiding in the unlicensed practice of medicine.

Suarez was charged with four felony counts and Kelly was charged with one felony count. Both Suarez and Kelly pled not guilty to the charges.


Registered Nurse Sentenced To Three Years Probation

A Chico Registered Nurse has been placed on three years criminal probation for stealing powerful prescription drugs including hydromorphone, morphine and oxycodone.

Michael Alan Headley received the probation sentence after a no contest plea to felony and misdemeanor charges. He was charged by the Butte County District Attorney’s Office with a felony for fraudulently obtaining a controlled substance and two misdemeanors for failing to document the administration of controlled substances.

An investigation by the Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation revealed Headley fraudulently obtained the controlled substances in the names of patients – some of which had already been discharged from the hospital, without physician’s orders. The investigation also uncovered he failed to document the administration and destruction of unused controlled substances.

The Board of Registered Nursing filed an accusation seeking disciplinary action against Headley’s license. Administrative actions against his license are pending.

Read more about this case in the Chico Enterprise-Record article HERE.


Undercover Operation Leads To Arrest And Felony Charges

shutterstock_125852813A southern California physician has been charged with a felony for practicing medicine without a valid license.

An undercover investigation into Foad Salehani, MD, by the Division of Investigation’s Operation Safe Medicine revealed he was practicing medicine illegally as he does not have a valid license to practice medicine from the Medical Board of California.

At the time of his arrest, not only did Salehani have an expired and suspended license, but he was also on probation with the Medical Board. The suspended license was for failing to comply with the terms of his probationary order.

Salehani will appear before the Los Angeles Superior Court to face charges. The Medical Board’s administrative case against him is pending.


Preliminary Hearing Scheduled for Doctor Facing Felony Charges

A preliminary hearing for a San Diego physician facing 24 felony charges has been scheduled for March 11, 2015, in the San Diego Superior Court.

Dr. Jeffrey Joel Abrams was arrested last November at a San Diego airport after the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office charged him with fifteen counts of sexual penetration of an unconscious person, eight counts of sexual battery, and one count of possession of child pornography.

The arrest was the result of an investigation conducted by the Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation – San Diego Field Office. It is alleged the crimes took place at a medical office in El Cajon. It is also alleged that Abrams had 1,300 pictures of nude or partially nude women in exam rooms on his cell phone, including a photo of a minor.

The Medical Board of California obtained an Interim Order of Suspension last October which immediately suspended his medical license and prohibited him from practicing medicine in California, pending further administrative action.

 


Southern California Physician Sentenced To Five Years In Prison For Illegally Prescribing Controlled Substances

A southern California physician has been sentenced to more than five years in prison by a federal judge after being convicted of illegally prescribing and distributing controlled substances.

An investigation into Dr. Andrew S. Sun revealed he illegally issued thousands of prescriptions for powerful and addictive controlled substances out of his San Gabriel and Los Angeles medical clinics. The Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation – San Dimas Field Office participated in the investigation with local, state and federal authorities.

“Doctors who illegally prescribe addictive and powerful narcotics pose a serious threat to the public,” said Division of Investigation Chief Michael Gomez. “We are happy to see justice was served.”

Sun is not allowed to legally practice medicine in the state of California. The Medical Board of California placed Sun on probation in 2010 and suspended his license in 2012 – both as the result of prescribing issues.

Read the Los Angeles Times article here.

Read the June 2014 U.S. Department of Justice press release here.

Read the April 2014 U.S. Department of Justice press release here.

For more information about the Division of Investigation, click here.

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Eleven Face Criminal Charges For Allegedly Forging Transcripts In An Attempt To Become Registered Nurses

Ten Licensed Vocational Nurses and one Psychiatric Technician are facing criminal charges in California for allegedly using fake transcripts to try to become Registered Nurses. All were arrested as a result of a multi-agency probe involving the California Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation (DOI) Hayward Field Office, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

The investigation discovered the 11 individuals used false and forged school transcripts from the Philippines in their Registered Nurse application in California and New Mexico. The individuals facing charges are: Voltaire Mendoza Alivia, Alain N. Andres, Leilani Orioque Baluyot, Ma Theresa Ungos Perez, Allen Dejamco Tan, Elma D. Viernes and Marissa T. Villaroman all from Orange County, and Mutya Fides Abitan Generoso, Lorna A. Ignacio, Leonara Villaflor Guevara and Daniel Endique Centeno all from Los Angeles County.

Charges were filed against the individuals by the District Attorney’s Office in their respective counties. The Division of Investigation worked with HIS and the IRS’ Criminal Investigation Division to pursue the case.

“Protecting consumers from unqualified and potentially harmful individuals is our top priority,” said Division of Investigation Chief Michael Gomez. “We would like to thank everyone for their hard work on this case and helping bring this forgery ring to light.”

Another woman, Joanne Keeney who resides in the Philippines, is suspected of supplying the falsified transcripts to the eleven individuals in this case. She is also accused of providing false transcripts to seven Registered Nurses that plead guilty to forgery earlier in the year. There is an outstanding warrant issued for her arrest.

The Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians has filed accusations against eight of the individuals and matters against the others are pending.


Investigation Leads To Federal Charges For The Illegal Sale Of Contact Lenses

Federal prosecutors have filed criminal charges against 12 defendants in the Los Angeles area for allegedly selling decorative and cosmetic contact lenses – including some that were contaminated, without prescriptions.

Charges were filed as a result of an investigation called operation “Cat Eyes” and was conducted by the United States Food and Drug Administration’s Import Operations Branch of the Los Angeles District Office, the FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations, the Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation Health Quality Investigation Unit, and the California Department of Public Health.

Contact lenses are prescription medical devices and are subject to FDA regulations and require prescriptions from medical professionals.

Read more about this case from the United State Department of Justice’s official press release here.


San Gabriel Valley Doctor Faces Federal Charges for Writing Illegal Prescriptions

Rx photoDr. Daniel Cham of San Gabriel Valley has pleaded not guilty to federal charges stemming from allegations he illegally wrote thousands of prescriptions for powerful and addictive prescription drugs.

Cham was arraigned on 31 counts and is charged with drug trafficking, money laundering, fraud, and making false statements to federal authorities. He will go to trial on December 16, 2014.

The DCA Division of Investigation Health Quality Investigation Unit’s San Dimas Field Office assisted federal authorities on this case.

Read more details on this case from the U.S. Department of Justice news release here.