A Cedarhurst man who operated a Queens pharmacy has been sentenced to 60 months in prison for illegally distributing oxycodone and then filing false income tax returns, federal officials said Thursday.

Breon Peace, the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, said Daniel E. Russo, 44, was sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Court Judge Dora L. Irizarry, having pleaded guilty in February to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute oxycodone, distribution and possession of oxycodone, and nine counts of filing false personal and corporate income tax returns.

In addition to the prison sentence, Russo faces three years of post-prison supervised release. He also paid more than $400,000 in restitution.

“From pharmacist to pill pusher, Daniel Russo betrayed his years of medical training to pocket dirty money in return for illegally selling enormous amounts of oxycodone, which was invariably later sold on the streets,” Peace said in a statement. “Today’s sentence sends a message to all would-be drug dealers, especially healthcare professionals, that the illegal distribution of drugs will be punished.”

According to documents, Russo owned and operated Russo's Pharmacy in Far Rockaway and, authorities said, that between March 2011 and June 2014, he conspired with others, including "medical professionals and employees," to fill "fraudulent prescriptions" for oxycodone — dispensing thousands of oxycodone pills in return for what authorities termed "hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash." Those illegal distributions led to at least one nonfatal overdose, authorities said.

In all, Russo failed to report more than $1 million in earnings, authorities said.

More than a dozen physicians for whom Russo filled prescriptions have been convicted of crimes related to the distribution of oxycodone, authorities said.

The investigation leading to Russo's conviction included the DEA Long Island Tactical Diversion Squad, comprising agents and officers from the DEA; Nassau County and Suffolk County police; Port Washington and Rockville Centre police, in conjunction with agents and officers from the U.S. Department of Health; and Human Services' Office of the Inspector General and the New York City Department of Investigation.

The case was the latest in an ongoing series of prosecutions launched a decade ago as part of the Prescription Drug Initiative.

That initiative has led to the more than 160 federal and local criminal prosecutions and the prosecution of 20 healthcare professionals, as well as civil enforcements against a hospital, a pharmacy and a pharmacy chain, authorities said.

A Cedarhurst man who operated a Queens pharmacy has been sentenced to 60 months in prison for illegally distributing oxycodone and then filing false income tax returns, federal officials said Thursday.

Breon Peace, the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, said Daniel E. Russo, 44, was sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Court Judge Dora L. Irizarry, having pleaded guilty in February to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute oxycodone, distribution and possession of oxycodone, and nine counts of filing false personal and corporate income tax returns.

In addition to the prison sentence, Russo faces three years of post-prison supervised release. He also paid more than $400,000 in restitution.

“From pharmacist to pill pusher, Daniel Russo betrayed his years of medical training to pocket dirty money in return for illegally selling enormous amounts of oxycodone, which was invariably later sold on the streets,” Peace said in a statement. “Today’s sentence sends a message to all would-be drug dealers, especially healthcare professionals, that the illegal distribution of drugs will be punished.”

According to documents, Russo owned and operated Russo's Pharmacy in Far Rockaway and, authorities said, that between March 2011 and June 2014, he conspired with others, including "medical professionals and employees," to fill "fraudulent prescriptions" for oxycodone — dispensing thousands of oxycodone pills in return for what authorities termed "hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash." Those illegal distributions led to at least one nonfatal overdose, authorities said.

In all, Russo failed to report more than $1 million in earnings, authorities said.

More than a dozen physicians for whom Russo filled prescriptions have been convicted of crimes related to the distribution of oxycodone, authorities said.

The investigation leading to Russo's conviction included the DEA Long Island Tactical Diversion Squad, comprising agents and officers from the DEA; Nassau County and Suffolk County police; Port Washington and Rockville Centre police, in conjunction with agents and officers from the U.S. Department of Health; and Human Services' Office of the Inspector General and the New York City Department of Investigation.

The case was the latest in an ongoing series of prosecutions launched a decade ago as part of the Prescription Drug Initiative.

That initiative has led to the more than 160 federal and local criminal prosecutions and the prosecution of 20 healthcare professionals, as well as civil enforcements against a hospital, a pharmacy and a pharmacy chain, authorities said.

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