In the city of Montclair a physician has been found guilty of writing thousands of illegal prescriptions.
Doctor Michael Durante, an internal medicine specialist, was convicted in federal court of selling the synthetic narcotic oxycodone, having dispersed illegal prescriptions for as many as 70,000 pills.
Durante, age 58, was convicted of 16 of the 17 charges originally filed.
According to John McCabe, DEA Special Agent of the New Jersey Division, Durante was arrested in March 2011 as one of 12 men in a drug distribution conspiracy.
During the investigation, Durante was secretly recorded instructing a DEA undercover agent to be careful, and take the prescriptions to several different pharmacies to avoid suspicion.
In court, the jury also heard the doctor openly discussing the resale value of the drugs on the street – $1,000 to $1,200 per bottle – and that based on the number of prescriptions Durante was providing, the buyers could expect to make up to $5,000 per week.
Durante could receive a 20-year prison sentence, as well as a $250,000 fine for each of the 16 felonies.
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