A New York physician was recently indicted for allegedly causing the deaths of two Long Island men through the excessive prescription of painkillers. Both the doctor and his assistant were indicted on drug charges in U.S. District Court.

The doctor has been in custody since June on the drug charges of illegally distributing painkillers and has pleaded not guilty, and the assistant was charged as a co-defendant with conspiracy and illegal drug distribution. The charges stem from the deaths of two men from a prescription the doctor wrote for oxycodone.

Oxycodone is one of the most common pain relievers, and it is the main ingredient in the prescription drugs Vicodin and Oxycontin. Its sale and distribution is strictly regulated, and any unauthorized sale or prescription carries harsh penalties.

Defendants convicted of drug offenses can suffer severe penalties, such as long jail sentences and substantial fines. Also, a felony conviction can have severe negative consequences for a defendant’s employment, as well as for his personal freedom. In addition, there is the aspect of the loss of respect in the community. When the individual is a member of a well-respected profession, such as the medical profession, a felony conviction can destroy a person’s reputation

Fortunately, any defendant accused of drug charges is entitled to a vigorous criminal defense. They have the right to challenge the constitutionality of the search of their homes and or person and the seizure of the allegedly contraband, and to have the evidence suppressed if it was obtained without probable cause.

Source: myfoxny.com, “NY Physician Charged in Drug Deaths of 2 Patients,” Frank Eltman, September 28, 2012