(WTVM) – The U.S. Attorney George L. Beck Jr. of the Middle District of AL announced that eight individuals have been sentenced.
They have been sentenced for their participation in a scheme to unlawfully obtain prescriptions for Oxycodone from a clinic in Opelika, AL.
The individuals involved in the scheme are as follows:
- Jean Herby Thelomat, 28, of Miami, FL – sentenced to 57 months
- Joseph M. McCann, 31, of Huntsville, AL – sentenced to 60 months
- Laura Amelia Robinson, 46, of Ellerslie, GA – sentenced to 21 months
- Quinton Michael Corbett, 28, of Belle Mina, AL – sentenced to 12 months
- Mauricia Adaryll Corbett, 35, of Harvest, AL – sentenced to six months
- Porcha Donielle Cawthorn, 25, of Huntsville, AL – sentenced to three years of probation
- Zachary Cornez Lilley, 26, of Huntsville, AL – sentenced to six months
- Brittney Lashelle McCauley, 27, of Toney, AL – sentenced to four years of probation
- James Richard Lawlor, 35, of Huntsville, AL – sentence is pending
According to the indictment and court documents, Thelomat developed a plan to create fraudulent medical paperwork that would be presented to EMeds Medical Clinic in Opelika, AL for Oxycodone prescriptions.
Thelomat obtained the cooperation of two other individuals to carry out this scheme. Joseph McCann was a patient of the clinic who assisted Thelomat by serving as a "sponsors" that recruited others to pose as patients at the clinic and receive prescriptions. McCann provided these patients with fraudulent medical paperwork that he created with the help of Thelomat.
In exchange for the paperwork, the drug seeking recruits would pay Thelomat and McCann a fee. These recruits would travel hundreds of miles from their known residence in north Alabama to the EMeds clinic in Opelika.
Laura Robinson was an employee of EMeds and was responsible for various day-to-day administrative functions, including verifying the legitimacy of paperwork submitted to the clinic by patients.
In that capacity, Robinson verified MRI paperwork prepared by McCann and Thelomat, even though she knew that the paperwork was fraudulent.
Robinson would also advise McCann on modifications that needed to be made to the fraudulent medical paperwork. This was to make the documents appear more legitimate and to justify prescriptions for large volumes of Oxycodone.
For her participation in this scheme, Robinson was paid a fee per patient, and also received portions of these payments in the form of pills.
The remaining six individuals listed were recruits who posed as patients. They also utilized MRI paperwork at the EMeds clinic to obtain illegitimate and illegal prescriptions.
"Prescription drug abuse is a rising problem in Alabama. Over the past several months ALEA has teamed with our federal and local partners to combat this problem and we are committed to continuing this effort," ALEA's State Bureau of Investigations Director Gene Wiggins said.
The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, IRS Criminal Investigation (CI) in Montgomery, the Opelika Police Department, and the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.
It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Gray Borden, Brandon Essig, and Bob Anderson.