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Pharmacist accused of filling dangerous amounts of opiates

February 24, 2021 GMT

CREVE COEUR, Mo. (AP) — A St. Louis-area pharmacist filled prescriptions for dangerous amounts of opiates, ignored obviously altered prescriptions and billed Medicaid and Medicare for medically unnecessary drugs, the U.S. Attorney’s Office alleged in a civil complaint.

Elizabeth Dembo was indicted Tuesday. She was the pharmacist-in-charge at Olive Street Pharmacy in Creve Coeur from Sept. 26, 2015, to March 5, 2018.

While she was there, the pharmacy bought three times more fentanyl than the average amount in Missouri and twice as much oxycodone as the average for Missouri and the U.S., the complaint says.

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The complaint also alleges that Dembo filled prescriptions for patients of Dr. Philip Dean, of Warrenton, who pleaded guilty in 2018 to making false statements to Medicare and Medicaid and to illegally distributing prescription opioids. He was sentenced to 40 months in prison.

“We are reviewing the allegations and will respond accordingly,” Dembo’s lawyer, Talmage Newton IV, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Wednesday,

Dembo also filled prescriptions for two doctors, Asim Ali and Stanley Librach, who were indicted last year on charges that include illegally prescribing controlled substances, the complaint says. They have pleaded not guilty.