3 members of prescription drug ring plead guilty

9 others await sentencing after entering guilty pleas

February 04, 2005|By Matthew Dolan | Matthew Dolan,SUN STAFF

Three members of a major prescription drug ring that operated from a Southwest Baltimore car wash and used fake doctor's orders to generate millions of dollars in street drug sales have pleaded guilty in federal court and received prison sentences, prosecutors announced yesterday.

Nine other defendants have pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing, according to prosecutors. Henry Muldrow, the remaining defendant, is scheduled for trial in June, prosecutors said.

U.S. District Judge Peter J. Messitte yesterday sentenced Sherry Heavel, 31, of Baltimore to serve 46 months in prison for conspiring to distribute prescription pain medication illegally and misbranding prescription drugs.

Curtis Sample, 50, of Baltimore was sentenced Wednesday to serve 57 months in prison for his role in the drug conspiracy.

The third defendant, John Lee Fulton Sr., 45, of Baltimore was sentenced Jan. 27 to 156 months in prison for the drug conspiracy to distribute OxyContin and for his role in a Medicaid fraud conspiracy.

Fulton was also ordered to pay restitution to Medicaid in the amount of $345,100 for the fraudulent prescriptions obtained through that program, prosecutors said.

All the cases have been heard in the Greenbelt division of the U.S. District Court of Maryland.

From February 1999 to the end of November 2003, the organization was responsible for more than 2,000 fake prescriptions for drugs such as OxyContin, Roxicet, Endocet and Percocet, prosecutors said.

The indictment in 2003 alleged that the group created fraudulent prescriptions using names and other pharmacy information stolen from area doctors.

The case stemmed from a two-year investigation by a joint task force. Several federal law enforcement agencies and police departments in Anne Arundel, Howard, Montgomery and Baltimore counties served on the task force.

According to the indictment, Muldrow of Baltimore and two co-defendants recruited others to fill the fake prescriptions at pharmacies across Central Maryland.

An attorney for Muldrow could not be reached yesterday.

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