The federal case charging local doctor Howard Gregg Diamond with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute controlled substances and a multitude of other charges seems to be growing.
Earlier this year, federal prosecutors added a name to the indictment — Jordan Brooke Johnson. Hers attorney Michael Uhl confirmed that she also pleaded not guilty recently to the charges she faces in the case.
In addition to the conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute charge, Diamond has also been charged with money laundering and abetting, distribution of controlled substances and health care fraud, and aiding and abetting. The charges also link Diamond’s prescriptions to the overdose deaths of seven people. Diamond pleaded not guilty to those charges last year.
Those charges against Johnson allege that she wrote prescriptions for controlled substances without a legitimate medical purpose. The controlled substances indicated in the indictment included fentanyl, morphine, oxycodone, oxymorphone, methadone, hydrocodone, hydromorphone, alprazolam, zolpidem, carisoprodol and diazepam. The indictment states, “the below listed deaths resulted from Howard Gregg Diamond and Jordan Brooke Johnson’s possession with intent to distribute and distribution of the below listed substances.”
It then lists the seven people authorities say died from overdoses of medication they were prescribed by the Diamond clinic.
The Associated Press reported that the overdose deaths occurred in three Texas cities — Abilene, McKinney and Sulphur Springs. Deaths mentioned in the indictment also occurred in four Oklahoma citites — Ardmore, Hugo, Idabel and Yokon.
Diamond was indicted in July on charges that seven people filled prescriptions from Diamond and then overdosed on those medications in the days and weeks that followed. Some of the patients died within a couple of days of filling the prescriptions and others were within a month of getting the medication.
In addition, the indictment says Diamond filed or caused to be filed paperwork with Medicare seeking payment for services he said he rendered to patients at times when the government says it has proof he was not in the place where the services were rendered. The indictment lists nine such counts that relate to charges ranging from $100 for an injection to $556 for a new patient visit. The indictment says the government is seeking the forfeiture of Diamond’s medical license if he is convicted of the charges.
Information from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said that Diamond’s prescribing of opioids outpaced every other Texas doctor save one in 2014.
CMS data shows that Diamond’s opioid claim count was 11,035 in 2014. “The claim count is the number of Medicare Part D opioid drug claims, including original prescriptions and refills,” CMS says. Diamond ranked 24th in the nation, according to the 2014 CMS data.
Court records show that Johnson is scheduled to go to trial at the end of this month, but that could change as the case moves forward. Diamond is currently set for trial in June.