Former Cop Charged In Connection With Michigan Prescription Drug Ring
LANSING (WWJ/AP) - A former Lansing-area police officer is charged in connection with a prescription drug ring that involved impersonating doctors and submitting fake prescriptions.
Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette says 37-year-old Christopher Parmelee of Lansing, 33-year-old Lyndsey Bennett of Dewitt, and 50-year-old Pamela Wolf of Eaton Rapids are accused of defrauding Michigan's Medicaid program.
The trio allegedly submitted fraudulent prescriptions to acquire the pain medication Norco and codeine cough syrup at pharmacies in Eaton and Clinton counties. Charges were filed Wednesday.
All three defendants are charged with:
- Two counts each of Medicaid Fraud-Conspiracy; a felony punishable by imprisonment of not more than ten years or a fine of not more than $50,000.00 or both;
- Two counts each of Controlled Substance-Delivery/Manufacture, a felony punishable by imprisonment of not more than seven years or a fine of not more than $10,000.00 or both
- Two counts each of Controlled Substances-Obtaining by Fraud, a felony punishable by imprisonment of not more than four years or a fine of not more than $30,000.00 or both
- Two counts each Medicaid Fraud-False Claim, a felony punishable by imprisonment of not more than four years or a fine of not more than $50,000.00 or both.
Wolf and Bennett were arraigned in 54B District Court Wednesday and each released on a $10,000 personal bond. They're due back in court for a pre-trial conference on Friday, Jan. 22.
Parmelee, who is serving a 5-10 year sentence for a November 2014 pharmacy robbery in Ingham County's Lansing Township, will be arraigned at a later date.
"Prescription drug abuse is an epidemic in Michigan and across the country. Addressing this problem requires a multi-faceted approach—including aggressive law enforcement focused on trafficking," said Schuette, in a statement. "Addiction destroys lives. The people who supply these strong, and potentially lethal drugs need to be stopped."
According to Schuette's office, Parmelee worked for the Perry and Laingsburg police departments until February 2014.
The Associated Press sent a message seeking information on whether Parmelee has a lawyer yet for the case.
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