A Long Island doctor was arrested Friday for illegally prescribing huge quantities of oxycodone to patients, a number of whom he knew were drug addicts, officials said.
Between January 2010 and December 2014, Frank Parasmo, 71, wrote more than 6,000 oxycodone prescriptions for at least 776,000 pills, according to a complaint filed in federal court in Central Islip.
Parasmo, who lives in Great River and practices in Deer Park as a principal in P & C Management Group, was charged with a single count of illegally distributing oxycodone, a powerful, addictive opioid pain killer.
He was not required to enter a plea and was released by U.S. Magistrate Gary Brown on a $300,000 bond co-signed by his wife.
Parasmo’s attorney, Daniel Giaquinto of Manhattan, declined to comment, as did the prosecutor in the case, Eastern District Assistant U.S. Attorney Charles Rose.
According to the complaint filed by U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agent Anton Kohut, the investigation began in fall 2014 when a probation officer contacted the DEA to report that Parasmo “continued prescribing … oxycodone to a well-documented poly-drug abuser in a drug-treatment program.”
A DEA check of state records revealed the number of pain pills prescribed by Parasmo — “a disproportionally high number for a specialist in family medicine,” the complaint said.
A check of Parasmo’s medical records showed he continued to prescribe the drugs “without legitimate medical purpose,” even after learning patients were or had been in treatment for substance abuse, including opiod addiction, according to the complaint.
Other patients had suffered nonfatal overdoses, abused cocaine and heroin, or had sold their own medication or used medication prescribed for other people, the complaint said.
Parasmo is accused of continuing to write prescriptions for patients even when his written records indicated he had refused to prescribe opioids for them and had discharged them.
In one case, the complaint said, a patient told agents that Parasmo prescribed oxycodone and hydrocodone for him without a physical exam.
Notes in Parasmo’s file on that patient written on another date indicate that the patient “seems to have [multiple] track marks from IV drug abuse.”
Another patient admitted “eating oxycodone pills like ‘Tic Tacs.’”
“The notes in Parasmo’s file indicted that he was aware that the patient was taking the pills ata rate greater than prescribed,” the complaint said.
The patient, who also acknowledged injecting heroin under Parasmo’s care, had “very obvious” track marks, agents said.
If convicted, Parasmo faces up to 20 years in prison, but suggested federal sentencing guidelines call for a sentence of 121- to 115 months in prison.
DEA New York spokeswoman Erin Mckenzie-Mulvey said Parasmo was the 31st medical professional arrested on Long Island by the agency since a crackdown began on illegal diversion of pharmaceuticals in 2009.
The crackdown escalated after the 2011 killings of four people during a Medford drugstore robbery by pain killer addict David Laffer.