Doctor pleads guilty to selling oxycodone

Doctor Frank Telang leaves federal court in Central Doctor Frank Telang leaves federal court in Central Islip after pleading to the alleged illegal sale of prescription drugs for pain killer oxycodone and other controlled substances. (Nov. 13, 2012) Photo Credit: James Carbone

advertisement | advertise on newsday

A Port Jefferson Station doctor, who also co-authored dozens of scientific research papers, pleaded guilty Tuesday to illegally distributing oxycodone.

Frank Telang, 56, also pleaded guilty to income tax evasion before U.S. District Court Judge Joseph Bianco in Central Islip. Telang admitted that he sold prescriptions for oxycodone for cash at his office, Integrative Neurology, 1174 Route 112, and in a parking lot along the Long Island Expressway, according to officials.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Many of his sales were to undercover officers and were videotaped, according to officials. "These prescriptions were provided for cash without any purported medical necessity and with no examination of the undercover patients," according to court papers.

Telang was arrested last December following a joint investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration and Suffolk police. The arrest was part of a crackdown on oxycodone sales on Long Island by federal and local investigators, after the 2011 murders of four people in a Medford pharmacy during a robbery of painkiller pills.

In addition to his private practice, Telang had worked before his arrest since 2003 for the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism from an office at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton. From 1997 to 2003, he worked directly for the lab as a researcher, officials have said. A number of Telang's scientific papers dealt with the effects of cocaine on the brain, according to the laboratory's website. The tax evasion charges involved Telang failing to report $25,000, according to court papers. Prosecutors said Telang made the money from the illegal sale in 2010 of prescription drugs.

Telang's attorney, Bruce Maffeo, said that his client is "a gifted researcher who had a terrible lapse of judgment in his private practice . . . but has done his best to accept responsibility."

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Telang faces up to 25 years in prison when he is sentenced. In court, Assistant U.S. Attorney Allen Bodie said Telang also faces the loss of his medical license. Bodie declined to comment afterward.

You also may be interested in: