UPDATE: NYC Doctor Sentenced to Five-Year Prison Term for Operating Prescription Opioid Diversion Scheme

Published Date

A New York City doctor accused by Federal authorities in November 2017 following an OMIG-assisted investigation of writing thousands of medically unnecessary oxycodone and fentanyl prescriptions over a three-year period was sentenced to serve five years in prison.

Ernesto Lopez, 76, of Flushing, NY, was sentenced on Tuesday, July 2 in Manhattan federal court by U.S. District Judge Denise L. Cote to the five-year prison term, as well as three years of supervised release, and was ordered to forfeit $1.4 million in ill-gotten gains and pay a fine of $50,000.

Lopez was previously found guilty in February following an eight-day trial of one count of conspiring to distribute oxycodone and fentanyl outside the usual course of professional practice and without legitimate medical need, and eight counts of distributing oxycodone outside the usual course of professional practice and without legitimate medical need. Prosecutors alleged that, Lopez, who purported to specialize in pain management, wrote thousands of medically unnecessary prescriptions for more than a million pills that totaled approximately $20 million in street value.

Read more about this sentencing, as well as OMIG's efforts.