Virginia Dillard, Niece and Employee of Southfield Medical Doctor, Sentenced for Prescription Drug Trafficking
|U.S. Attorney’s Office October 20, 2011|
Virginia Dillard, age 32, was sentenced today to 112 months’ imprisonment for conspiring with Dr. Gwendolyn Washington, a Southfield medical doctor, to illegally distribute OxyContin and tens of thousands of other Schedule II controlled substances on the streets of Detroit, United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade announced. McQuade was joined in the announcement by Andrew G. Arena, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Detroit Field Division, and Lamont Pugh, III, Special Agent in Charge, Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General. Dillard was sentenced by the Honorable Paul D. Borman.
On July 26, 2011, Dillard pleaded guilty to seven counts of a federal indictment charging her with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, possession with the intent to distribute controlled substances, and distribution of controlled substances.
Specifically, the indictment alleged the following: Virginia Dillard was employed by Dr. Gwendolyn Washington, M.D. who is a family practice physician, licensed by the State of Michigan. Dr. Washington maintained her medical practice at 29255 Northwestern Highway, Suite 105, Southfield, Michigan. Virginia Dillard is also Dr. Washington’s niece. In February 2010, Medicare suspended payments to Dr. Washington due to ongoing health care fraud at her medical practice. After the drastic reduction in her income, Dr. Washington began writing prescriptions for tens of thousands of doses of OxyContin, Opana ER, and Roxicodone, highly addictive pain medications that have a significant “street value” on the illicit market. Washington sometimes wrote prescriptions for individuals who were not her patients, without an examination or determination of medical necessity, and without an appropriate diagnosis or entry in a patient chart. Washington then provided these illegal prescriptions to Virginia Dillard. Dillard filled the prescriptions at various pharmacies in Highland Park, Warren, and Detroit. After filling the illegal prescriptions, Virginia Dillard delivered the controlled substances to prescription drug dealers in exchange for money. Dillard sold each filled prescription in amounts ranging from $1,000 to $2,200, and shared the proceeds with Dr. Washington.
United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade stated, “Prescription drug abuse is a growing concern in Michigan. More Michigan residents now die from prescription drug abuse than from heroin and cocaine abuse combined.”
Andrew G. Arena, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Detroit Field Division, stated, “Diversion of prescription medications is an increasing criminal threat to Michigan and the rest of the United States. Dishonest health care providers are involved in the illegal prescription drug trade, not thinking of the danger to the end user, but in the profit of the drug sales. The FBI remains committed to investigating “white-collar” drug dealers and bringing them to justice.”
Dr. Washington also pleaded guilty to the conspiracy and is scheduled to be sentenced on November 14, 2011 at 2:30 p.m.
U.S. Attorney McQuade congratulated the hard work of the FBI and HHS for its efforts in pursuing this case. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Resnick Cohen.