An 83-year-old Rockland pharmacist pleaded guilty in federal court on Wednesday to masterminding a $9 million prescription-selling scheme with customers across the country.
Maurice Malin of Suffern admitted to conspiring to illegally sell over 5 million prescription Butalbital pills to customers across the U.S. who did not have valid prescriptions for the drugs from March 2014 to July 2016, said Joon Kim, acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York.
Malin also agreed to forfeit $9 million, which represented his proceeds from the illegal scheme, Kim added.
“As Maurice Malin admitted today in court, he made millions of dollars illegally dispensing drugs over the Internet to customers who had no valid prescriptions and had never seen a doctor," Kim said. "Pharmacists entrusted with the sale of controlled substances must safeguard the health of consumers, not scheme to profit from illegal drug sales.”
Customers, who had not consulted with a physician and did not possess a valid prescription for the drug, ordered the drugs on prescription websites, which were sent to pharmacies, including Malin Pharmacies in the Bronx, Kim Said.
The pharmacies then dispensed the drugs to customers.
During the course of the investigation, undercover agents made numerous purchases of Butalbital on the websites that were fulfilled by the Malin Pharmacies. In certain instances, Malin's name was listed as the fulfilling pharmacist on the Butalbital bottles agents received, Kim said.
In addition, many of the bottles that were received as a result of the undercover buys did not bear the name of any doctor who had prescribed the Butalbital, and instead repeated the name of the patient in the location on the label where the doctor’s name should have appeared had there been a valid prescription, he added.
Malin was also captured on recorded phone calls with undercover agents acknowledging that he was aware that customers who placed orders on the websites had not met with or consulted with a physician prior to placing their online order.
He was arrested on Aug. 10, 2016, and faces a maximum 10-year prison sentence.
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