5 Doctors, Pharmacist Among Those Charged With Distributing Millions Of Oxycodone Pills


IN A MAJOR OXYCODONE BUST. CBS 2’S ANDREA GRYMES REPORTS ON THE DRUG RING AND THE IMPACT ON THE ALLEGED VICTIMS. IT’S BEEN A LONG TIME COMING. I HAVE BEEN WAITING A WHILE FOR THIS. SO I WAS VERY HAPPY WHEN HE WAS ARRESTED. Reporter: A SENSE OF RELIEF FOR MATTHEW PINTO THAT THE DOCTOR HE SAYS LED HIS SISTER TO OVERDOSE ON OPIOIDS IS NOW FACING FEDERAL CHARGES. HE WAS PRESCRIBING HER A TON OF DIFFERENT MEDICATION, OXYCODONE, ADDERALL, XANAX FOR YEARS. Reporter: THE FUNERAL DIRECTOR WANTS TO KEEP HIS SISTER’S IDENTITY PRIVATE. SHE IS NOT DOING WELL. IN LARGE PART, BECAUSE OF THAT DOCTOR ANTHONY PIETRO PINTO. HE IS A PSYCHIATRIST IN MANHATTAN BUT WAS PRESCRIBING PILLS HE SHOULDN’T HAVE BEEN. HE DID NOT SPECIALIZE IN PAIN MANAGEMENT, YET HE PRESCRIBED OXYCODONE TO APPROXIMATELY 214 PATIENTS OVER FIVE YEARS. HE WROTE PRESCRIPTIONS TO PEOPLE HE KNEW HAD NO LEGITIMATE MEDICAL NEED FOR IT. Reporter: HE IS ONE OF TEN DEFENDANTS BUSTED ON FEDERAL CHARGES INCLUDING FIVE DOCTORS IN SEPARATE BUT SIMILAR CASES. U.S. ATTORNEY JEFFREY BERMAN SAYS THEY OPERATED ACROSS NEW YORK CITY, WESTCHESTER AND LONG ISLAND HIDING BEHIND MEDICAL LICENSES TO SELL DANGEROUS AND UNNECESSARY OPIOIDS. AS ALLEGED IN TODAY’S CHARGES, INSTEAD OF CARING FOR THEIR PATIENTS, THESE DOCTORS WERE DRUG DEALERS IN WHITE COATS. Reporter: THE FEDS SAY BETWEEN THEM, THE DOCTORS PREDESCRIBED MILLIONS OF PILLS DOING LITTLE OR NO PHYSICAL EXAMS OF THEIR PURPORTED PATIENTS, OFTEN PRESCRIBING REFILLS WITHOUT SEEING THEM, ALL ADDING TO THE OPIOID CRISIS. I HOPE THAT THESE DOCTORS GET WHAT THEY DESERVE. THEY SHOULD BE TREATED AS CRIMINALS. Reporter: LATE THIS AFTERNOON, EACH OF THE DEFENDANTS BEGAN FACING A JUDGE HERE AT FEDERAL COURT. SO FAR, THEY HAVE BEEN PLEADING NOT GUILTY WITH ONE OF THE DOCTORS’ ATTORNEYS TELLING ME HIS CLIENT WAS UNFAIRLY TARGETED. IN LOWER MANHATTAN, ANDREA