“The depth and breadth of his criminality was astounding. There was no explanation for his conduct other than unbridled, and amoral, greed.” (U.S. Attorney Zane D Memeger)
For two and a half years a drug-dealing machine masqueraded as a medical clinic in the working-class city of Levittown Pennsylvania. The scam was operated by a wacked-out doctor named William J. O’Brien. O’Brien, trained in osteopathic general medicine, had other “clinics” too, scattered across northern Pennsylvania and one in New Jersey. His drug-pushing biz was on track to make the doctor a literal fortune. Over a 26 month time-span that started in the winter of 2012, O’Brien and his cohorts raked in more than $5,000.000 by selling more than 500,000 pills.
As medical folks go, the O’Brian gang was a motley crew. Peter “The Nose” Marandino, for example, was their “patient” recruiter. Pat “The Redneck” Treacy shopped for business partnerships. Michael “Tomato Pie” Thompson managed the “medical records”. Not that there was much patient charting going on, because the doctor performed almost no patient care. What he did perform were lightning quick, hand-written narcotic prescriptions – tossed out by the hundreds of thousands. His business buddies were members in good standing of the street gang Pagans Motorcycle Club. Together they built one of the busiest prescription drug scams in the East, illegally selling hundreds of thousands of opioid pills for huge profits.
The drug-pushing clinic was a strange twist on the usual pill mill scams that have popped up to fuel America’s appalling overdose death toll. The Pagans would recruit “patients,” willing to pay $250 cash for oxycodone or Xanax prescriptions. O’Brien would falsify medical records to indicate the patients were in pain. When clients couldn’t pay, the doctor would trade prescriptions for “sex time”. They recruited nude dancers from a local strip club, and the women would service the doctor in lieu of cash payments. The dancers testified they routinely performed oral sex on the doctor, in order to pay off other peoples’ debts.
The disgusting scam was able to fly under the radar for quite a while. But in January 2015, Pennsylvania state prosecutors charged the doctor with Narcotic Distribution Conspiracy, in a whopping, 127-count indictment against O’Brian, his wife and 8 of his buddies.
All of his drug-scheme buddies, and his wife, confessed. And after a trial that lasted a month and a half, O’Brien, age 51, has been found guilty on nearly all charges.
So this week, a federal judge handed down his sentence. The lab coat loon was escorted away in handcuffs, to begin his 30 years in prison.
Here’s another look: