GAVEL BOARD COMMITTEE JUDGE COURT HEARING PIXABAY

A licensed pharmacist who owned and operated CARE4U Pharmacy in Manassas pleaded guilty Friday to illegally distributing prescription drugs, including oxycodone, Adderall, and Xanax, by filling fake or fraudulent prescriptions.

According to court documents, between November 2016 and July 2018, George Appiah, 47, of Manassas, filled at least 128 fake or fraudulent prescriptions, including 85 prescriptions for oxycodone, brought to the pharmacy by his two co-conspirators (identified in court filings as CC-1 and CC-2).

Appiah provided CC-1 and CC-2 the names and medical credentials of at least five unwitting doctors for use in forging the prescriptions, and provided templates of the doctors’ prescription pads, so that CC-1 and CC-2 could “Photoshop” the image and make the fake prescriptions look legitimate, the U.S. District Attorney's Office said in a news release.

Appiah pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances. He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison when sentenced on October 23. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; James A. Dawson, Special Agent in Charge, Criminal Division, FBI Washington Field Office; and Barry M. Barnard, Chief of Prince William County Police, made the announcement after Senior U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis, III accepted the plea. Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine E. Rumbaugh is prosecuting the case.

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