A Florida man pleaded guilty yesterday to unlawfully distributing opioids at his pain management clinic in Miami, Florida.
According to court documents, Habib Geagea Palacios, 40, of Miami, owned a cash-only pain management clinic in Miami, Florida named General Care Center, Inc. At General Care Center, Palacios paid doctors to prescribe opioids to nearly all patients who visited the clinic, resulting in the illegal distribution of more than two million tablets of Oxycodone 30 mg and generating more than $3 million in cash that was deposited into various bank accounts associated with the clinic and Palacios. Five doctors who worked at General Care Center have already pleaded guilty in connection with their unlawful prescribing practices at the clinic.
Palacios pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and one count of distributing a controlled substance. He is scheduled to be sentenced on January 26, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. and faces a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
U.S. Attorney Juan Antonio Gonzalez of the Southern District of Florida; Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; Special Agent in Charge Omar Pérez Aybar of the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General (HHS-OIG), Miami Regional Office; Special Agent in Charge George L. Piro of the FBI’s Miami Field Office; Special Agent in Charge Deanne L. Reuter of the DEA Miami Field Division; and Special Agent in Charge Brian Swain of the U.S. Secret Service (USSS), Miami Field Office, made the announcement.
HHS-OIG, FBI, DEA, and USSS are investigating the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin J. Larsen of the Southern District of Florida and Trial Attorney Alexander Thor Pogozelski of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section are prosecuting the case.Healthcare Fraud Medically Unnecessary Opioid Crisis Oxycodone Patient Harm Pill Mills Provider Arrest Rx Fraud