Aron Rotman and Rivaz Jummani, Orange County, Florida doctors, were arrested and charged with racketeering on Thursday, March 22, nearly a year after police raids on Pro Relief Center and Pain Relief Center in Orange County, FL, according to reports. Both doctors were booked at the Orange County Jail, where they attended their initial bail bond hearings. Rotman remains in jaiil in lieu of paying an undisclosed bail amount; Jummani is out on $5,000 bail. It is unclear whether either party has retained a private criminal defense attorney.
According to the police report, 55-yearold Rotman and 65-year-old Jummani were arrested as a part of Florida’s drug enforcement strike, which has resulted in the arrests of five Florida doctors, all for prescribing unnecessarily powerful prescriptions, many of which are believed to have ended up circulated in the illegal prescription drug market. One doctor, Jose Menendez of Casselberry, has already been convicted and sentenced to 25 years in prison. He has been accused of supplying drug dealers with narcotics and painkillers in Osceola County.
Dr. Rotman and Dr. Jummani were reportedly caught after an undercover officer went to one of the offices complaining of back pain, where he was seen by Dr. Jummani. The doctor reportedly used a stethoscope to listen to the detective’s breathing before giving him a prescription for 120 painkillers. The detective reported that the doctor never even examined his back, which, as it turns out, was perfectly healthy. Authorities suspect that this pattern was typical for Jummani’s patients; the visit, said the agent, barely lasted five minutes.
In this way, law enforcement authorities allege that Dr. Rotman and Dr. Jummani supplied drug dealers with pain killer prescriptions. The report indicates that telltale signs of an undercover operation were apparent from signs ranging from armed security guards, no hand-washing station or visible medical instruments inside the facility, and patients loitering in the parking lot. During a raid last summer, investigators took paperwork and evidence and questioned the two doctors but made no arrests pending the completion of the investigation.
An investigation into the patient list for Dr. Jummani revealed that out of 75 randomly selected patients who had filled prescriptions from the doctor at Wallgreens in 2010, 64 had criminal records and 42 had drug-related criminal records. In fact, investigators from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement have said that Jummani prescribed more oxycodone in the final quarter of 2010 than all of the doctors in California combined during the same time frame. Oxycodone is an exceptionally addictive painkiller if abused and is popular in the illegal prescription drug dealing market. It is not immediately clear what evidence the agency has against Dr. Rotman regarding racketeering.
Gerald Bailey of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement has called a press conference for this Thursday, at which he will reveal how the department plans to continue fighting prescription drug abuse in Florida in 2012. This may include arrests of more doctors as well as underground drug dealers, suppliers and customers.