Physician is indicted on federal drug charges
June 2, 2005 WILMINGTON - A physician with offices in Wilmington was indicted on federal
narcotics charges for dispensing prescription painkillers to at least a
dozen patients without any legitimate medical purpose, authorities said Wednesday.
Dr. Parambaloth Edwin's medical license was suspended by state regulators in
April 2003, a short time after Drug Enforcement Administration agents
executed searches at his Wilmington office and seized patient records, authorities
Edwin, 64, of Dwight, also was charged in the 17-count indictment with
failing to maintain accurate records for more than 50,000 tablets of a painkiller
he dispensed to patients.
Doctor facing federal charges
6/2/2005 - Indicted for giving painkillers without a legitimate need
A Dwight physician was free today after his indictment late
Tuesday on federal narcotics charges.
Dr. Parambaloth A. Edwin, 64, who had practices at 104 N. Main St., Dwight,
and the Wilmington Medical Center, 201 E. Kahler St., Wilmington, was
charged in 17 counts with allegedly dispensing prescription painkillers to
patients without a legitimate medical purpose.
Edwin also was charged with failure to keep accurate records of a controlled
substance that he sold to patients, said Randall Samborn, spokesman for the
federal court system from the Northern District of Illinois.
Samborn said Wednesday the doctor was not taken into custody following his
indictment. Edwin will, however, be arraigned in U.S. District Court at a
later date, he said.
U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald and Richard W. Sanders, special agent in
charge of the Chicago office of the Drug Enforcement Administration,
released the indictment Wednesday. Assistant U.S. Attorney Madeleine S.
Murphy is representing the government in the case.
Edwin, who began his practice in Dwight in 1977, was charged in the federal
indictment with 12 counts of illegal distribution of hydrocodone, a
controlled substance, and five counts of failing to maintain accurate
records of the hydrocodone he obtained from pharmaceutical companies.
The indictment alleges Edwin, at his office in Wilmington, illegally
dispensed 685 hydrocodone tablets in various strengths to 12 unnamed
patients between Aug. 14, 2001, and March 18, 2003.
Samborn said the indictment contains one count for each of the 12 patients,
and alleges Edwin illegally distributed between three and 120 hydrocodone
tablets to each of them on a dozen different dates.
The five other counts charge that on April 9, 2003 ‹ the date his Wilmington
office was searched ‹ Edwin failed to keep complete and accurate records of
27,341 tablets of hydrocodone.
This included 3,725 tablets of hydrocodone 10/325, and 911 tablets of
hydrocodone 10/650, plus 4,341 tablets of hydrocodone 5/500. Also, 2,943
tablets of hydrocodone 7.5/500, and 15,421 tablets of hydrocodone 7.5/750.
The maximum penalty for conviction is five years on each count of illegal
distribution, plus a fine of $250,000. The maximum penalty is four years in
prison and fine of $250,000 for conviction on each count of failing to
maintain accurate records.
Samborn said the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation suspended in
April 2003 Edwin¹s license to practice medicine and that the DEA revoked the
doctor¹s ability to write prescriptions.
The suspension came about a week after DEA agents executed searches at
Edwin¹s offices in the Wilmington Medical Center and seized patient records,
Edwin said in a telephone interview with the Morris Daily Herald on April
24, 2003, the suspension of his license was his first problem in 26 years of
practice, and that he did not intentionally do anything wrong.
He said a lot of physicians who prescribe pain medication are being arrested
for something they legitimately prescribe. The trend, he said at the time,
was to charge physicians with major crimes when there is no crime.
"It¹s a big trend that¹s going on - federal prosecutors prosecuting pain
doctors (who prescribe for such as) arthritis, injuries and chronic pain,"
he said then.
"People are dying left and right on street drugs, so they are going after
doctors because they are high profile. Many pain doctors are complaining
about this, and trying to get out of prescribing these drugs for legitimate
Edwin also blamed the pharmaceutical companies for aggressively pushing
their products. "Then telling us we don¹t have to worry about state boards
going after us," he said.
The IDPR¹s suspension of Edwin¹s license said the doctor continued to
prescribe controlled substances to patients whom he knew to be chemically