Dr. Shakeel Kahn was one of the few pain management physicians practicing in Casper, let alone Wyoming until November 29, 2016. He graduated from the University of Wyoming Family Practice Residency at Casper in June 2007. He practiced family medicine from January 2008 until late 2011 when he focused his practice on assisting patients with chronic pain issues first in Arizona until May 2015 and then in Wyoming. As a member of the American Academy of Pain Medicine and member of the American Academy of Pain Management, Dr. Kahn employed the most current guidelines in providing pain management to his patients. His practice conformed to the guidelines set forth by the Wyoming Board of Medicine in all respects including employing the Chronic Opioid Toolkit.
With the retirement of a local nurse practitioner in Casper and the suspension of the license of a physiatrist in Lander, Dr. Kahn’s practice swelled with new pain patients including a large portion of the Native American population from the Wind River Reservation in the Lander/Riverton area. He also had a few elderly patients who were on large amounts of oxycodone and had been on the same regimen for years, even before Dr. Kahn became their doctor. He was never concerned about them diverting their medications, as there were no signs of any aberrant behaviors that would have made him suspicious. In all his years of practice Dr. Kahn has never had a patient overdose or die as a result of his treatment.
On Tuesday, November 15, 2016 at approximately 9:30 a.m. there was a bang at the door to Dr. Kahn’s home with someone yelling “search warrant”. His wife, Lyn Kahn, was sitting in her chair watching TV. Dr. Kahn opened the door to face a man in a bulletproof vest pointing a gun at his head telling him to get to the floor. With that, a large contingent of armed men came into the house, which Dr. Kahn later came to realize were DEA agents, Wyoming Department of Criminal Investigation agents and other police. The agents proceeded to haul Dr. Kahn’s stepdaughter out of her room, yelled at Dr. Kahn’s stepson and his fiance, who rent a bedroom in the basement, to come out. The male agents proceeded to watch Dr. Kahn’s future daughter-in-law get dressed and then proceeded to pat down both his stepson and future daughter-in-law.
After permitting Dr. Kahn to get up, two DEA agents, Diversion Investigator Robert Churchwell and Special Agent Justin Vanderbilt, took Dr. Kahn into the basement to speak with him. Dr. Kahn asked to see the search and seizure warrant but they only showed him the first page, not the pages regarding particulars to be seized. They told Dr. Kahn that they wanted to search his office. Dr. Kahn asked if he could call an attorney first, to which they replied no. They stated that they were going to search his office and would break the door down if they had to. They asked Dr. Kahn to take them to his office and Dr. Kahn had no choice in the matter.
While Dr. Kahn was at his office, he was made to wait in his waiting room while the assembled agents proceeded to search the entire office, take away patient charts, remove computers, etc. Churchwell and Vanderbilt questioned Dr. Kahn about his general business practices but when they wanted him to talk to IRS Criminal Investigation Agent Jake Rice, Dr. Kahn declined, instead requesting an attorney.
Dr. Kahn later learned that other agents had taken his stepson and future daughter-in-law to the family business, Vape World of Casper, where they conducted a search and seized the computer tablets, with which they do business. After the search they released both Dr. Kahn’s stepson and his future daughter-in-law.
When Dr. Kahn was finally brought home, his wife and stepdaughter were still being detained in the living room with an agent sitting nearby. A neighbor had brought a FEDEX package from a patient that had been delivered to her home by accident days before. The DEA seized it, even though it was sealed. Dr. Kahn’s patient told him that he had sent $3000 in cash to settle his outstanding past medical bills along with a letter addressed to Dr. Kahn. Lyn Kahn had been asking to see the warrant and had been refused. The DEA questioned her to a point but when they asked about particular patients of Dr. Kahn, she asked for an attorney for which she was told “you screwed yourself and your kids too”.
The DEA finally gave Dr. Kahn a copy of the search and seizure warrant but not the attachments. Dr. Kahn requested copies of those and was ultimately provided them. IRS agent Jake Rice told Dr. Kahn that he had other warrants for him but did not have them in hand. He later returned around 6:00 p.m. with seizure warrants for all Dr. Kahn’s personal and corporate bank accounts as well as two sports cars that were garaged in Arizona.
In Wyoming, the DEA seized $5900 in cash that was in Dr. Kahn’s safe, $750 that was given as gifts for his infant son, Dr. Kahn’s cell phone, everyone’s laptops, computer tablets, patient charts and other assorted records including vehicle purchase/loan contracts.
At the same time Dr. Kahn was being subjected to a raid in Wyoming, the DEA accompanied by Arizona DPS and the Mohave Area General Narcotics Enforcement Team, executed a search and seizure warrant on his home in Fort Mohave, Arizona. Dr. Kahn’s younger brother, Nabeel Khan, was staying at the residence, which is his permanent residence since obtaining his Green Card in late October 2016. The search warrant was exceeded and a large number of items not on the warrant were seized, including Dr. Kahn’s father’s life savings in a safe.
Nabeel Kahn’s account of what transpired in Arizona is located here: . In total the DEA and its subordinate law enforcement agencies seized 10 automobiles, 49 firearms, two televisions and savings of $1,048,000.00 in cash that was inside two safes, one belonging to Dr. Kahn’s father in his room and one in a spare bedroom. Subsequently to the raids, Dr. Kahn has received notification in rem that his house in Casper, Wyoming and two houses in Fort Mohave, Arizona are to be forfeited to the United States of America.
On the evening of November 29, 2016, Dr. Kahn was suddenly notified by the Wyoming Board of Medicine that his license had been summarily suspended due to an imminent threat to the health, safety and welfare of the public, a result, Dr. Kahn believes, of the DEA talking to the Board of Medicine.
On November 30, 2016, Justin Vanderbilt and other agents returned to Dr. Kahn’s home and executed arrest warrants for Lyn and Dr. Kahn. Dr. Kahn was taken out of his home and marched down the street in full view of the press that the DEA had called, only to be handcuffed at a police cruiser. Lyn Kahn was handcuffed inside the house and led down the street in full view of the press to a waiting police cruiser. The Department of Family Services was also present in the home to see about Dr. and Lyn Kahn’s infant son. Lyn and Dr. Kahn spent almost 48 hours in the Natrona County Detention Center before being brought to Federal Court for a detention hearing and thereafter being released on conditions.
Shortly thereafter, Dr. Kahn’s bail was revoked when a patient contacted him for medical assistance. Dr. Kahn is currently incarcerated in Scottsbluff, Nebraska awaiting trial. In the meantime, all his assets are facing forfeiture and his medical career is in shambles. His health is deteriorating as prison officials have not allowed him his medications and as a practicing Muslim he has been refused Halal food and any opportunity to pray. His trial is scheduled for October, if he can hold out that long. Dr. Kahn is only one of many pain management physicians who are being PERSECUTED by the DEA.