Yesterday, a press release revealed that a federal jury convicted former doctor Patrick Titus of illegally selling opioids, after an investigation from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) found he operated an “internal medical practice” where he would sell these dangerous drugs for cash.
Titus, according to the Department of Justice, sold a variety of powerful opioids, including fentanyl, morphine, methadone, OxyContin and oxycodone, “prescrib[ing] hundreds of these dangerous controlled substances in high dosages, sometimes in combination with each other or in other dangerous combinations, mostly in exchange for cash.” Titus “provided no meaningful care” to those he sold these drugs to illegally; instead, he prescribed these substances to patients “he knew were suffering from substance use disorder.”
Amidst an opioid crisis in the United States, Titus had “utter and total disregard for his ethical and legal obligations as a medical doctor, especially due to the fact that he distributed these drugs knowingly to people suffering from substance use disorder.” Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr., of the DOJ’s Criminal Division, commented that “doctors who illegitimately prescribe opioid medications are fueling the country’s opioid crisis,” and “this verdict serves as a reminder that such abuse will not be tolerated.”
Titus was convicted of 13 counts of unlawful distribution and dispensing of controlled substances and one count of maintaining a drug-involved premises, with up to 20 years of jail time per count. Special Agent in Charge Maureen Dixon of the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) commented on the verdict saying that it holds “ Titus accountable for his actions and should serve as a warning to others that the illegal prescribing of dangerous narcotics will not be tolerated.”
Titus will be sentenced on November 9.