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NYC doctor charged in $10M oxycodone ring

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A Manhattan doctor and his assistant ran a $10 million oxycodone ring run through a Gramercy medical center, supplying a vast network of dealers involved in two separate operations, according to authorities.

Hector Castro, 51, an internal medicine doctor, and his assistant, office manager Patricia Valera, were arrested and indicted Thursday following an investigation dubbed ‘Cuba Libre’ that led to the arrest of 47 others.

Oxy Ring

Hector Castro, 51, an internal medicine doctor, and his assistant, office manager Patricia Valera, were arrested and indicted Thursday following an investigation dubbed ‘Cuba Libre’ that led to the arrest of 47 others.

According to the Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor, Castro and Valera sold more than 500,000 pills, worth at least $10 million, out of the Itzamna Medical Center at 205 East 16th St.

Patricia Valera went by the name "Kardashian" on the street

Patricia Valera went by the name “Kardashian” on the street

Valera, who was known as “Kardashian” on the street, was allegedly dealing on the side — stealing 155 prescription sheets from Castro and his brother.  She would then forge the scrips sell them for $500 a sheet — often to two competing prescription drug rings in Pennsylvania.

Valera faces 464 charges from the sales and forgery.  Agents arrested Valera and her husband, who is accused of helping her, at their home in the Bronx Tuesday morning.  Agents also arrested three of Valera’s regular customers: Euclides Valdez and Ranody Cruz in New York, and Savier Polanco in New Jersey.

According to the investigation, which began in late 2011, Castro was running his own under-the-table business from the Itzamma Medical Center, writing illegal prescriptions to junkies in New York and New Jersey.  Authorities believe he pulled down $637,000 in sales.

The investigation began after a Woodbridge, NJ, man died in December 2011 after overdosing on a prescription signed by Castro.

5 comments

  • William Rogers

    Those who do not already know will never know. However, the facts of the matter in this scenario are: the 'real' bad guys happen to be the authorities, the DEA, the federal government and the incredibly inept 'news people' and their constant 'chatter' about topics of which they know nothing. It is pornographically sickening. And please don't give me statistics that show how dangerous 'pain killers' are – the number of patients dying from failure to be treated properly with pain medication is one thousand times greater than all the accidental or on purpose over doses put together. I really do wish their was a hell because it would be filled to the brim with anyone and everyone who had or has anything to do with the now 40 year long "War on Drugs'. If it wasn't so sad….it would be hilarious..

  • Dr Bill Belfar

    This is exactly what I have been treating in my clinic and appearing on television about. Over prescribing of oxycodone by doctors whether purposeful or not can be very dangerous to patients and doctors alike. Oxycodone is a synthetic opiate just like heroin is. If prescribed properly,it is great for pain. When overprescribed it can and will lead to addiction and possible death for patients. For both doctors and patients, it will lead to jail and legal issues if incorrectly prescribed and used.

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