Three are indicted in drug conspiracy


June 20, 2008|By BRENT JONES

A federal grand jury indicted a Catonsville man and two others yesterday, charging them with conspiracy and intent to distribute more than 2 million doses of weight-loss drugs.

According to the indictment, Susana Mendez, 49, and Jose Riopedre, 50, both of Miami, operated Web sites that allowed customers to order drugs after filling out a questionnaire, which purportedly would be reviewed by physicians. The online prescriptions would be filled at brick-and-mortar pharmacies and shipped to customers, the indictment says.

Derrick Truby, 45, of Catonsville was hired as the registered pharmacist for one of those pharmacies, and from January to March 2006, he allowed the pharmacy to fill thousands of Internet prescriptions when he was not on the premises, according to the indictment.

The indictment seeks forfeiture of $7.8 million from Mendez and Riopedre. Funds were held under medical names Waterview Pharmacy, Drugs Discount Online Inc. and LEXA Medical Supplies Inc. Waterview, in Laurel, was closed in October 2005.

Truby is scheduled for an initial court appearance today in Greenbelt. If convicted, he could face a maximum penalty of five years in prison.

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