U.S. Attorney's Office
Eastern District of Virginia
(703) 299-3700
February 27, 2015

Maryland Man Sentenced to Two Years in Prison for Aggravated Identity Theft

ALEXANDRIA, VA—Wesley Max Burns, Sr., 58, of Temple Hills, Maryland, was sentenced today to two years in prison followed by one year of supervised release for aggravated identity theft. He was also ordered to pay over $1.25 million in restitution.

Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Andrew G. McCabe, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office; and Colonel Edwin C. Roessler, Jr., Fairfax County Chief of Police, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Claude M. Hilton.

Burns pleaded guilty on November 14, 2014. According to court documents, in February 2013, a pharmacist in Falls Church, Virginia, contacted the Fairfax County Police Department to report suspicions that Burns, a customer of the pharmacy, was using fraudulent prescriptions to obtain large quantities of narcotic pain medication. Burns had been a patron of the pharmacy for several years and obtained numerous narcotic prescriptions over the years for medications including morphine, oxycodone, and fentanyl. In February 2013, Burns approached the pharmacist and requested from him a written statement that he could provide to his employer, explaining why his urinalysis specimens would test positive for opiates. The pharmacist thought it was unusual that Burns would approach him, rather than his doctor. The pharmacist followed-up with a call to the doctor, who advised that Burns had never been his patient. Burns was arrested on local charges in March 2013. Burns pleaded guilty to six charges of obtaining a prescription by fraud in Fairfax County, Virginia, Circuit Court, and was given suspended jail sentences in March 2014. In June 2014, Burns attempted to utter a forged prescription for narcotic pain medication in Alexandria. Burns listed the doctor as the prescribing physician.

Between 2008 and 2013, about 550 prescriptions for narcotic pain medications were filled by Burns, in his name and the name of his wife. At least 230 of those prescriptions were filled by forging the name and signature the doctor. The defendant used CVS Caremark, a third party administrator of prescription drug plans that accompany health insurance plans, to fill out fraudulent prescriptions. The total amount that CVS Caremark paid for the fraudulent prescriptions passed by the defendant is $1,251,969.16. CVS Caremark was made whole for its costs by the Prince George’s County, Maryland Public Schools, Board of Education. That entity is the actual victim.

This case was investigated by the FBI’s Washington Field Office and the Fairfax County Police Department. Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Anna A. Vlasova prosecuted the case.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:14-cr-357

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