The Phenomena of Immigrant Pill-pushing Physicians

Here's exactly how many MDs see their patients

Here’s exactly how many MDs see their patients

“The abuse and distribution of opioid-based pharmaceutical drugs are at epidemic proportions in Alabama and across the United States. Unfortunately, some physicians have abandoned their Hippocratic oath and responsibilities to their patients and communities. Blinded by the allure of greed, deadly and highly addictive pharmaceutical drugs are distributed without regard. The abuse of opioid-based drugs can, and often does have deadly consequences.” (DEA Special Agent Clay A. Morris)


Countless thousands of immigrant doctors have made the United States there home over the past four decades, and their numbers appear to be accelerating. Regretfully, the number of foreign-born physicians who have turned to a life of crime in our communities, to meet their wealth-building agendas, is also – by all measurable criteria – an ugly and alarming trend. Here’s one case of 219 that we have in our files:


In the city of Jasper Alabama a pain management physician changed his “not guilty” plea to “guilty” last week, to writing thousands of prescriptions for no legitimate medical need.

Doctor Muhammad Wasim Ali,  age 51, the owner/operator of the Walker Rural Health Care/Jasper Neurological clinic, made the decision to confess the same morning that he was due to go on trial before U.S. District Judge  Scott Coogler in Tuscaloosa. Ali admitted to 10 charges of illegally distributing narcotics “outside the scope of professional practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose” to three people working undercover with law enforcement, according to a statement from U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance and Drug Enforcement Administration Assistant Special Agent in Charge Clay Morris.

Ali was arrested in March and had his DEA Controlled Substances Registration revoked.

The court record shows that the wayward physician illegally prescribed more than 1,000 oxycodone pills to three different undercover agents over a 3-month period that ended in November. 2014. During these “patient” visits, Ali performed no appropriate medical exams and asked for no medical records. When law enforcement raided his clinic, detectives discovered that Ali had falsified medical records for the three undercover officers; had referenced fake physical exams and created imaginary diagnoses.

Investigators determined that Ali was writing 52 narcotic prescriptions per day, for morphine, hydrocodone, oxycodone and methadone – more than 99% of all other Alabama doctors.

Ali was originally arrested on more than three dozen felony charges, including 26 similar counts of dispensing controlled drugs to other so-called patients.

Ali will most likely get a two-year prison term and an $85,000 fine.


Our Observations:

Ali is an immigrant from Pakistan, having graduated from Dow Medical College in Karachi. The Alabama State Board of Medical Examiners knew full well that Ali had a faulty ethical compass, because they suspended his license temporarily four years ago for the same misbehavior. As far back as 2010 they knew he was routinely “improperly and/or excessively prescribing controlled substances, including OxyContin, Lortab and Norco.”

In other words, medical authorities already knew this man was a drug dealer in a lab coat.

Did they revoke his license? No.

Did they tell him he was on the deportation court docket? Of course not.

The immigrant doctor pill-pusher was fined $10,000 in November of 2012, and was told to enroll in a “medical recordkeeping” class.

He paid the fine; took the bare minimum medical records course – a course that had absolutely NOTHING to do with being a drug dealer – and then went right on pushing pills and making drug money.

Yes, indeed. So how well does vapid physician discipline work out for the American communities where foreign-born doctor-criminals ply their trade?

Lord, love a duck, you people. The garbage behavior we tolerate.


Doctor Arnold Klein: “I was Michael Jackson’s Best Friend”

“Put me next to a patient, give me a needle and I’m really happy.”

– Arnold William Klein, MD

Yes, indeed. Trigger-happy physicians. Hard to imagine why 100 Americans are buried everyday after prescription drug overdoses.


Celebrity + drug dealer = a Perfect Storm

Celebrity + drug dealer = a Perfect Storm

I have a friend here in Southern California whose job is even more interesting than mine. He investigates death scenes for a living. And part and parcel to his career-choice is a front-row seat to thousands of physicians’ foul-ups, bloops and blunders in the Twilight Zone of what healthcare calls ‘therapeutic misadventures.’  Last week we stood in the parking lot of the Riverside County Coroner’s office comparing notes on unethical physicians in the celebrity playground of Palm Springs. So it was a natural transition for our conversation to turn toward the county morgue’s most famous temporary resident. For lying silently within the large cold storage vault just a few feet away from us, was the body of Doctor Arnold Klein, who died Thursday evening at Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage.

Doctor Arnold William Klein – and you may well remember this fellow – was a physician for numerous Hollywood celebrities over three decades. His specialty was dermatology, and he plied his trade for all it was worth onto some particularly famous faces: Elizabeth Taylor was a client. So was Dolly Parton. And Dustin Hoffman. And Sharon Stone. His favorite thing in the world to do was using injectable drugs like Restylane and Botox to battle facial wrinkles and sagging necklines.

But nobody he treated was more famous than the enigmatic Michael Jackson, who – thanks to Klein – sported the most recognizable face on earth. And it was reeling in Jackson as a frequent patient, who had developed the disease vitiligo, that helped secure Klein as a fixture among the uber-society of Beverly Hills.

In fact, Jackson’s weekly – and towards the end, daily – visits to Klein for narcotics became so routine, that the L.A. paparazzi learned they could always count on getting at least a fleeting photo of the pop star, by simply camping out in front of the clinic. And Klein loved it. He reveled in the fact that he was becoming almost as famous as his A-list clients. Klein pushed drugs into Michael for a quarter century, calling him “my best friend.” And all the while, Klein got richer and Michael got skinnier, stranger and whiter. All of which is curious, because Klein himself had been an outspoken critic of the misuse of prescription drugs, calling them “toxins,” for many years prior to his A-list client wealth-building system.

But then by now we all know – at least those of us paying attention –  that when it comes to morality in medicine, ethics are routinely shelved for fame and profit.

“Just what you want in your doctor.”

Arnold Klein, age 70 at the time of his death, was a curious figure. It was 20 years ago, in 1996, for example, when he brokered an arranged marriage between Jackson and his own medical assistant, Debbie Rowe, who agreed to marry and bear two of Jackson’s children – Prince and then Paris – for serious money. The couple soon divorced, as was the plan all along, and Klein toyed with the media for two decades over the idea that he fathered the children. He would say he hadn’t. Then maybe he did. Then he was pretty sure he wasn’t the father. Then, in 2013, Klein posted a photo of himself and Prince Jackson on Facebook, implying that he was the biological father of Prince after all. He even filed for custody of the kids that he maybe fathered and maybe didn’t, after Jackson’s overdose death. He lost in court to Katherine Jackson, Michael’s mother.

In the summer of 2009 immediately following Jackson’s death, Klein was one of five physicians heavily investigated for supplying hard-core drugs to the pop star. It was learned that he had injected Jackson with Demerol more than four dozen times in the weeks leading up to his death. But when Jackson’s death was blamed on “acute propofol intoxication,” Klein was cleared and another celebrity-infatuated wacko, Conrad Murray, was arrested, charged and convicted of killing his patient-boss. Klein was off the hook . . . barely.

Not long after Michael Jackson’s death, the wayward doctor was apparently missing the limelight, so he told the press that Jackson was actually a closeted gay man and in love with Klein’s clinic manager, a man by the name of Jason Pfeiffer. When Pfeiffer was asked to comment, he answered that yes,  he and Jackson had “been intimate” numerous times. Klein was once again front and center in celebrity news – for a week.

But that was when Klein’s closest celebrity friends began a serious retreat, and some were loudly criticizing him for betraying his most famous patient’s trust.

“Just what we want in our doctors,” Elizabeth Taylor once said. “I thought doctors were like priests, taking an oath of confidentiality. May God have mercy on his soul.”

Indeed, in the end, God only knows. What we all do know now, in the year 2015, is that Michael Jackson is encased in a concrete tomb at Forest Lawn. And Arnold Klein lies in our local county morgue, his body unclaimed, after having died in a hospital room in severe abdominal pain; facing numerous lawsuits; financially broke and alone.

Both men are as dead today as if they had died in ancient Rome.

Here’s a peek at this very strange character, in his own words:


California Doctor Drug-pusher Kills a Few People. Is Anybody Out There Listening?


Still think we’re exaggerating?

Dr Hsiu Ying Tseng

Dr Hsiu Ying Tseng

A jury in Los Angeles Superior Court found a Chinese-American physician guilty of multiple charges of Murder last week, in a stunning verdict that the District Attorney’s office said was the first case of its kind in U.S. history.

Doctor Hsiu Ying Tseng, age 45, was convicted at the end of a 6-week trial, of killing three patients by over-prescribing powerful drugs to them, which directly led to their deaths. The jury also determined she was guilty of 19 other instances of illegally prescribing narcotics and yet another charge of fraudulently obtaining  narcotics. Some of the drugs involved included methadone, oxycodone and hydrocodone, as well as Valium and Xanax.

Although the case was limited to three patients – Joseph Rovero, age 21; Vu Nguyen, age 28 and Steve Ogle, 24 – investigators are convinced that Tseng is actually responsible for nine other overdose deaths, during a 36-month period that started in 2006. Tseng, who specialized in internal medicine, was routinely dispensing powerful addictive drugs to patients with no medical need and who were often already seriously addicted. Detectives discovered that during that time the drug-pushing MD brought in at least $5,000,000 in clinic profits.

The Drug Enforcement Administration reported that Tseng wrote more than 27,000 prescriptions over a three-year period, at a pace of at least 25 per day, with minimal or no medical histories performed.

Is YOUR doctor listed in this book?

Is YOUR doctor listed in this book?

According to District Attorney John Niedermann, Tseng documented no adequate patient charts, nor did she keep mandated medical records for numerous prescriptions. Once she knew she was under investigation, investigators discovered that she began falsifying patient charts.

Tseng, a trained osteopath, was arrested in March 2012 and has remained behind bars at Los Angeles County Jail. She could receive a life sentence when she returns to court in December.

Here’s another look:


Best hope your MD isn't in this book, too

Best hope your MD isn’t in this book, too


Doctor/Lawyer/Drug Dealer Loses All Three Careers

“We appropriately grant a tremendous amount of trust to health care and legal professionals and the vast majority are dedicated community servants. But a few blatantly violate their Hippocratic Oath — and we are serious about ensuring they do no more harm to Utah citizens.” (Utah State Attorney General Sean Reyes)


Dr Stanley Clark Newhall

Dr Stanley Clark Newhall

In the town of Sandy Utah a fellow who was once a well-known attorney and physician has managed to derail both careers. Doctor Stanley Clark Newhall, age 65, has been disbarred by the state from practicing law, and now has also surrendered his license to practice medicine, after confessing in court  to Attempted Illegal Drug Distribution and Attempted Witness Tampering.

Investigators revealed that in June 2014 information surfaced that Doctor Newhall, who performed the rare combination of both medical malpractice law as well as emergency medicine, was providing prescription drugs to three younger women in Utah county in exchange for sex. This information was entered into the court record. However the final determination of guilt did not address this particular issue.

According to state prosecutor Scott Reed of the Utah Attorney General’s Office, Newhall would routinely write drug prescriptions for his staff members and friends without performing medical exams; without keeping medical records and with – by all indications – no true medical need.

Prosecutor Reed reports that the charges they were able to prove were twofold:  that the prescription drugs were being issued improperly and that Newhall tried to persuade a staff member from cooperating with detectives about what was going on. The case also revealed that the doctor would prescribe drugs supposedly for a staff member, that were actually for himself.

“Rather than following accepted protocol, prescriptions were being written with virtually no medical determination of need, at all,” explained Scott Reed.

“It’s a sad ending to an otherwise good career.”

District Judge Paul Parker sentenced the doctor/lawyer to 2 years probation and 150 hours of community service.

Here’s another view:



‘Bubba Gump’ Doc Swaps Narcotics for Shrimp

“. . . shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it. Dey’s uh, shrimp-kabobs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo. Pan fried, deep fried, stir-fried. There’s pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich. That’s about it.” (Bubba talking to Forrest Gump)


“Yes sir, I am guilty.” (Doctor Steve Morris, last week in federal court)

Dr Steve Morris

Dr Steve Morris

In the state of Mississippi a drug-dealer physician has admitted in court that he sometimes traded prescription pills for shrimp, and sometimes just gave them out for free on boat rides, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney John Meynardie.

Those and other crimes were revealed in federal court earlier this week when Doctor Steve Morris, age 57 of Gulfport, confessed just before his trial that he routinely distributed narcotics outside the standard of accepted medical practice, over a two-year span that started in 2013.

The drugs listed in the charges are the narcotic painkiller, oxycodone; an anti-anxiety generic drug similar to Xanax; as well as the non-narcotic muscle relaxant Soma.

Morris could receive a 5-year term in federal prison. The government will take possession of $35,000 in illegal proceeds from the drug deals, as well as two vehicles and issue a $250,000 fine.

As part of the plea, Morris admitted also that he conspired with two staff members of his clinic – Peggy LaPorte, a 59-year-old nurse, and Brittany Spikes, age 29. The prosecution was prepared to prove that one undercover officer went to the clinic more than 20 times, and was given prescriptions each time for drugs with no medical need, and no routine physical exam or tests performed. Other witnesses were ready to testify to similar incidents.

All three medical professionals at the Total Health Solutions clinic were arrested for Conspiracy, as well as “aiding and abetting each other to possess, distribute and dispense controlled substances outside the scope of proper medical practice.”

Total Health Solutions

A total of 57 felonies were defined in the indictment.

Laporte and Spikes are out on bail pending separate trials. The maximum penalties in this case is a prison term of 20 years and a $1,000,000 fine on each felony.

The doctor is expected to be sentenced in January by U.S. District Judge Sul Ozerden in Gulfport.

Here’s another look at this case:

  • Unknown  (7/16/2015)
  • Action Taken: License Restricted
  • Summary: Morris III, Steve MD: License # 13836: NATURE OF COMPLAINT: Unknown at this time. ACTION TAKEN: The Mississippi Board of Medical Licensure has granted continuance with the restrictions that the physician cannot practice until such time as a hearing is conducted and a decision is rendered.
  • State: Mississippi


Doctor Drug-pushers: They Never Learn; They Never Stop

Dr Lawrence Wean

Dr Lawrence Wean

In the tiny town of Media Pennsylvania yet another MD has chosen to disgrace his profession – this one by committing more than 100 felonies. His crimes were among the most common to be found within the medical profession: Illegal Narcotic Prescriptions and Insurance Fraud.

Doctor Lawrence Wean, age 61, was handcuffed and taken into police custody last December after undercover detectives posed as new patients and were issued painkiller prescriptions with no true signs or symptoms of medical need. Wean’s clinic, located on the Baltimore Pike, about 12 miles west of Philadelphia, was immediately locked down.

During the trial investigators testified that they entered the clinic on multiple dates with no appointments; that they underwent no routine medical histories or physical exams; that they were simply given prescriptions for Oxycodone, Percocet and Xanax. One detective told the court he would pay $200 cash for each visit. Another reported that he used his Blue Cross insurance card – the bills for which listed treatments that were never performed.

Prosecutor Sharon McKenna was able to show the jury that Wean’s medical files had very little – and in many cases, no – patient information or treatment notes.

Wean’s clinical staff testified that the doctor ignored their warnings that many of the so-called “patients” were known in town as drug dealers. They said hundreds of people would simply walk in off the street and walk out with drug prescriptions with no demonstrated medical need.

Judge Anthony Scanlon revoked Wean’s bail after the guilty verdict was read.

Lawrence Wean’s sentencing is scheduled for December 2.

Here’s another view of the case:


Kansas Husband/Wife Pair Re-sentenced in Murderous Drug-pushing Clinic Scheme

Dr Stephen Schneider & wife Linda

Dr Stephen Schneider & wife Linda

A Wichita-area MD and his wife were each reissued long prison sentences last week for their convictions in a wealth-building scam that resulted in at least 68 narcotic overdose deaths. The original trial occurred in 2010. At the end of the case, U.S. District Judge Monti Belot said this:

“Even here today, I don’t think you appreciate all the harm you caused. The deaths, addictions, all to get money. If there was any decent medical care, it pales in comparison.”

Doctor Stephen Schneider, now age 62 and his wife, Linda, age 57, pleaded for mercy as the judge reassessed their original sentences. The re-sentencing was necessary because the U.S. Supreme Court had ruled in a similar case last year that a victim’s drug use must be the actual cause of death to impose the harshest punishments on physicians, under the Controlled Substances Act. Because of that ruling, Judge Belot dismissed several of the couple’s original convictions in June.

The judge agreed with the prosecution by once again sentencing the doctor to 30 years in prison and his wife, who functioned as their clinic’s business manager, to 33 years. The same punishment was imposed after the couple was convicted in 2010 of Healthcare Fraud Conspiracy resulting in deaths, Illegal Drug Prescribing, Healthcare Fraud and Money-laundering.

The couple’s clinic in the Wichita suburb of Haysville had seen as many as 2,000 people per month – many already known to law enforcement and other clinics as drug addicts.

How do many MDs see patients? Just like this: walking, talking, pill-popping ATM machines

How do many MDs see patients? Just like this: walking, talking, pill-popping ATM machines

Schneider and his wife had argued that they helped those in chronic pain and would see up to 100 patients a day. But investigators proved that the doctor spent almost no time with his so-called ‘patients’; did almost no physical assessments; kept inconsistent, or in some cases no medical records. They learned that Schneider was in the habit of leaving pre-signed prescription notes for staff to hand out when he was not even present in the clinic. Many so-called patients told police it was well-known in the community as “the place to go” for easy drugs.

“It is almost impossible for me to overstate the harm that these people caused to their community,” Judge Belot said. “Sure they are sorry here today. But it is what they did then that counts most.”

Here’s some background on the Schneiders: