PASCO COUNTY, Fla. – A physician faces a $500,000 fine and a New Port Richey pain clinic will be required to permanently close after allegations of improper prescribing of opioids, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Wednesday.
Physician Tobias Bacaner will pay $500,000 and will be barred from prescribing controlled substances under an agreement approved by U.S. District Judge Virginia Covington, the Justice Department said in a news release.
Also, Theodore Ferguson II and Timothy Ferguson, owners of the Paragon Community Healthcare pain clinic, will be required to pay $100,000 and permanently close the clinic.
The news release said Bacaner, an employee of Paragon, was alleged to have written prescriptions for opioids “without a legitimate medical purpose.”
It also said Bacaner and the Fergusons used a jointly owned pharmacy to fill prescriptions. “Dr. Bacaner and his associates profited from unlawfully prescribing opioids without a legitimate medical purpose,” Roger Handberg, U.S. attorney for the Middle District of Florida, said in a prepared statement. “We will continue to protect the community from those who place a higher value on profit than the safety of the public.”
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