UPPER EAST SIDE, Manhattan — An 81-year-old doctor already busted for allegedly writing illegal prescriptions for highly-addictive painkillers faces new charges for prescribing unnecessary oxycodone and fentayl to a Staten Island man who fatally overdosed.
Dr. Martin Tesher faces life in prison over the 2016 dead of Nicholas Benedetto. Acting United States Attorney Bridget Rohde said he fostered the opioid crisis for personal gain.
“As alleged, instead of providing his opioid addicted patients with medically appropriate and lawful care, Dr. Tesher quite literally fed their addiction,” Rhode said. “In this case, his actions resulted in the death of a patient.”
Benedetto tested positive for cocaine, heroin, morphine, methadone oxycodone and fentanyl while he was being treated by Tesher, according to the criminal complaint. He died of an overdose two days after Tesher prescribed him both oxycodone and fentanyl patches.
Prosecutors said earlier Tesher sold more than 14,000 prescriptions between 2012 and January of 2017, most of them for the oxycodone. Overdoses now kill more people annually than car crashes.