FDA: Three arrested in drug diversion scheme

MIAMI Three Florida residents were indicted last week on charges related to drug diversion, according to the Food and Drug Administration.

The FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations and U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida Jeffrey Sloman announced that Jose Castillo of Fort Lauderdale, Federico Fermin of Miami Beach and Terri DeCubas of Pembroke Pines were indicted and charged with distribution of prescription drugs without a license, mail fraud, money laundering and conspiracy to commit those offenses, while DeCubas also was charged with making a false statement to an FDA agent. Between 2002 and 2005, the three allegedly grossed more than $13 million through their efforts, according to the announcement.

According to the indictment, the Castillo, Fermin and DeCubas allegedly used a method that involved health plan beneficiaries obtaining drugs they didn’t need or were willing to forgo at the plans’ expense; the three alleged diverters then bought them for less than the wholesale price and altered the labels to make them appear new; they then shipped them to a licensed wholesale distributor in Texas, which shipped them to the alleged diverters’ customers, as if they had traveled exclusively through licensed channels.

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