A Dix Hills orthopedic surgeon and his wife surrendered Tuesday morning to Nassau police and federal agents on charges related to the illegal distribution of oxycodone, authorities said.
Dr. Salvatore Corso, 56, who practices in Woodbury, faces charges of criminal sale of a prescription for a controlled substance, a felony, and a misdemeanor charge of fourth-degree criminal facilitation after he provided prescriptions to someone who did not have a “legitimate medical need,” court records show.
The doctor’s wife, Lea Corso, 39, was charged with possession of a forged instrument, a felony, after she “allegedly obtained his prescription pads and forged prescriptions for oxycodone” that she filled at various Long Island pharmacies, said Nassau County district attorney’s spokesman Brendan Brosh in an email.
The couple turned themselves in at Rockville Centre police headquarters.
The surgeon “allegedly generated prescription notes for controlled substances for his wife . . . as well as several other individuals,” Brosh said.
The relationship between Salvatore Corso and the other individuals wasn’t immediately known.
According to Brosh, his “prescription writing practices were allegedly not in good faith, and his conduct deviated from accepted standards of practice in that he improperly prescribed controlled medications” without concern of their illicit use.
The couple was in the process Tuesday of negotiating a plea deal, according to their attorneys and prosecutors.
Garden City attorneys Frederick J. Annibale Jr., who represents Salvatore Corso, and F. Scott Carrigan, who represents Lea Corso, each entered not-guilty pleas at the couple’s arraignments in First District Court in Hempstead before Nassau District Court Judge Paul Meli.
After, the Corsos were released on their own recognizance.
Carrigan called Lea Corso “a loving mother and a loving wife. . . . I’m confident that at the end of the day, the matter is going to end very favorably for Mrs. Corso, with the consent of the district attorney’s office.”
Annibale said Salvatore Corso has treated him and his family and is “probably one of the finest” orthopedic surgeons.
“The allegations here have nothing to do with his day-to-day medical practice, have nothing to do with third parties,” Annibale said. “He didn’t sell or give prescriptions to people outside of a personal matter involving a family member.”
Annibale said Corso “is a very honorable guy.”
Salvatore Corso’s offenses took place between July 13, 2011, and May 15, 2015 and his wife’s occurred between Nov. 23, 2011, and Oct. 20, 2012, court papers said.
Corso continued writing the prescriptions until he was aware he was under DEA investigation, prosecutors said.
The case was the result of a joint operation by DEA agents and Nassau and Rockville Centre police, according to officials.