A physician assistant, who runs two medical clinics on the East End, was sentenced to 5 years in prison Friday for running an illegal oxycodone distribution scheme.
Michael Troyan, 38, of Riverhead, also was ordered to forfeit $710,000, the amount of money taken in the scheme, as well as to serve 3 years supervised release.
Before he was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Denis Hurley at federal court in Central Islip, Troyan said: “I need to be clear that I accept full responsibility for my actions.” Troyan added that “my actions were not out of greed but driven by addiction.”
While acknowledging that Troyan had overcome an abusive childhood to have an otherwise exemplary career and also had had a substance abuse problem himself, Hurley said that given the scope of the distribution scheme, he felt that the defendant mainly “was motivated by greed.”
Troyan had asked for a lenient sentence, possibly with no jail time, after pleading guilty to conspiracy to illegally distribute oxycodone.
But Eastern District Assistant U.S. Attorney Allen Bode noted that an investigation by the Long Island drug diversion unit of Drug Enforcement Administration showed that Troyan had been responsible for distributing more than 70,000 pills over four years.
As part of the investigation, Bode said undercover DEA agents videotaped Troyan in his Riverhead office writing phony prescriptions for oxycodone in return for cash.
“This sentence serves as a stern warning to all medical professionals entrusted with authority to prescribe controlled substances that there is a price to pay for such criminal conduct,” Eastern District United States Attorney Robert Capers said in a statement.
Another member of the ring, who had a lesser role, former Southampton Councilman Bradley Bender, had only been involved in the distribution of several thousand pills but received a sentence of 2 years, Bode said. Bender resigned his position in November 2015 shortly before pleading guilty.
Troyan’s license to act as a physician assistant is listed as “inactive” on the records of the New York State Department of Health. It could not immediately be determined when it was placed in that state.
In explaining how the scheme worked, U.S. Attormey Capers said: “For years, Troyan supplied Bender and others with phony prescriptions for huge quantities of oxycodone pills, which Bender filled and illegally exchanged for cash and steroids with another co-conspirator. The oxycodone pills were then resold to drug abusers, sustaining the destructive abuse of opioid analgesics in our communities.”
Officials have said that the Troyan investigation began when an unnamed surgeon reported him as a possible drug dealer because an oxycodone-addicted patient of the physician assistant was so desperate for more of the drug that he used a pencil to rip open the stitches of a tonsillectomy.