A New York physician has been arrested on charges of illegally selling painkiller prescriptions to two patients.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says Anand Persaud was arrested at his Baldwin, Long Island, office, on Tuesday. He was arraigned in Nassau County Court on two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance.
Persaud, who also has an office in Queens, is accused of selling prescriptions for oxycodone without providing medical documentation or a medical exam. He allegedly charged $250 or more for each painkiller prescription, and prosecutors said he took in almost $1.5 million in two years.
"He had hundreds of people who were hooked on prescription pain relievers, and he was dishing it out like candy," said Schneiderman.
The sales allegedly happened in November 2012 and March 2013. The year-long investigation into Persaud began when Rockville Centre police arrested one of his patients. Later, undercover investigators bought prescriptions while posing as patients, said Schneiderman.
Oxycodone is one of a number of highly addictive opiates.
His attorney told reporters Persaud was a "very respectable doctor and he's helped a lot of people."
"The charges are shocking, and we're going to work our way through the criminal court system," said Todd Greenberg.
The father of three could get 15 years in prison if convicted.
Several New York area physicians have been arrested in the past two years as part of an ongoing crackdown on painkiller abuse.
-- Greg Cergol contributed to this report.