Michael BelfioreMichael Belfiore, DO, 53, of Westbury, NY is the next solo-practice family doctor willing to treat pain to be attacked professionally for doing his job as a doctor. He is also the eighth Long Island doctor to be attacked, in a federal targeting of pain-treating physicians. In practice since 1994, he has treated his patient’s pain from that time through 2013. As so many compassionate physicians under attack, his concern is for his patients. “These people are in pain, and they don’t know where to go and what to do.”

He was originally charged in 2014 with unlawfully prescribing oxycodone to an undercover detective who falsely claimed that he suffered from back and shoulder pain. But even though the undercover cop received controlled substances fraudulently, the doctor gets charged, and they use the laughable statement that the officer had “no legitimate medical need” against the doctor. This is unbelievable, but used by prosecutors all over the country as a means to charge a doctor criminally using the Controlled Substance Act.

They also attempt to make Dr. Belfiore look like a ‘drug-pusher by claiming he prescribed painkillers to patients who had drug abuse problems or were diverting them. That is usual practice in Grand Jurys to for prosecutors and DEA agents to make false perjurous statements like that. But prosecutorial misconduct of perjury is an accepted practice in the Judicial System. And then the media helps turn public opinion against him by making statements like: “A Merrick doctor padded his bank account by illegally prescribing oxycodone…”

Loretta Lynch, the Attorney General, was U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York. I wonder if her attacks on doctors helped her climb the Justice Department ladder. Probably, as one of the reasons for the attacks on doctors is promotion in the system.

Now he faces additional charges of illegally prescribing the drug to other patients, for a total of 29 charges against him. But what they don’t tell you is that those 29 charges are all based on only 3 patients. Each month’s prescription was a separate charge. It is unclear why these three patients have been singled out. The prescriptions are for from 8 to 150 tablets of 30 mg oxycodone per month.  Oxycodone can be dosed every 4-6 hours. 150 tablets per month give the patient 5 tablets per day, which would be an allowable amount under appropriate prescribing protocols. So if that is all they can come up with, they are banking on false testimony to win.

Also, for swaying public opinion against the doctor, the prosecutors have “accused” him of writing 5,000 prescriptions for 600,000 pain pills between January 2010 and March 2013. That averages out to 131 prescriptions per month with 120 pills per prescription. That is not an unusual amount of pain meds for a doctor treating pain. But the prosecutors claim it is “an extremely high number of oxycodone prescriptions and oxycodone pills issued by a sole family practitioner,” Not true. The real fact is that they are targeting solo-practice family practitioners because they are “easy wins” in court, giving those prosecutors “promotion-worthy” statistics.

Dr. Belfiore states that those prescriptions extended over five years, not three, that he sees up to 40 to 50 patients a day and on average, wrote six to seven oxycodone prescriptions a day. That shows that his practice was not primarily pain management. So it would seem that he is a target simply for someone to make a name for himself (Loretta Lynch for example?) or to confiscate the doctor’s assets, as is the usual reason for attacking doctors today. Especially since he voluntarily stopped writing prescriptions for pain medications in 2013, because, he said, he was working to move his practice away from pain management.

Here is the crux of the reason for attacking Dr. Belfiore, as well as all the other doctors being attacked: Point 3 of the indictment states:

Counts One through Twenty-Nine that upon his conviction of such offenses, the government will seek forfeiture in accordance with the United States Code, {Section 853a), which requires any person convicted of such offenses to forfeit any property constituting or derived from proceeds obtained directly or indirectly as a result of such offenses, and any property used or intended to be used in any part to commit or to facilitate the commission of such offenses.

The investigation into his practice has crippled his business, Belfiore said, noting that he has been “blacklisted” by insurance companies, medical equipment suppliers and laboratories.

“I’m guilty until proven innocent,” he said. “I can still treat patients, but how do you do it?”

Dr. Belfiore pleaded not guilty in federal court on Aug. 30. His attorney issued a statement saying Belfiore is a compassionate, caring doctor who did the best he could to take care of his patients. The attorney claims the charges against Belfiore are not accurate.

Belfiore is due back in court at the end of this month (September). If convicted, he faces 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine.

I can tell, from reading the hype produced by the media, that there is going to nothing but lies coming from the undercover detective. But the entire position of the prosecution in cases like this is nothing but lies. And yet juries convict good doctors. People who read this post need to pass the word that all of this is illegal persecution. STOP CONVICTING DOCTORS FOR DOING THEIR JOB!!

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