An Orange County doctor was sentenced to 135 months in federal prison by United States District Judge Andrew Guilford last week for distribution of pain medication to patients he barely examined.
Dr. Yee pleaded guilty to several counts of illegal distribution of a controlled substance. The doctor admitted that he prescribed pain medications such as OxyCodone Vicodin and Xanax after meeting his patients at Starbucks. The government alleged that he barely examined his patients.
Yee was investigated by the DEA, Orange Police Department and the Huntington Beach Police Department as well as the California Medical Board. Yee was charged after an undercover sting operation. Yee met with and prescribed these medications to three undercover operatives. Two were undercover agents and one was a confidential source, also known as an informant.
The Federal Sentencing Guidelines in Yee’s case called for a sentence of 210 to 262 months. However, there was a “binding plea agreement” wherein the government and Yee’s attorney agreed to a sentence of 121 months which is the mandatory minimum in a case involving distribution of this type and quantity of narcotics. Judge Guilford sentenced Yee below the sentencing guidelines range but above the term agreed to by the parties.
The government agreed to a 121-month sentence because Yee’s guilty plea saved the government extensive resources involved in putting on what was estimated to be a four-week trial. The government also cited Yee’s health and lack of a criminal record. Government counsel was also sensitive to the fact that Yee lost his medical license and saw that as additional punishment. Basically mimicking the government's sentencing memo, the attorney for Yee requested a 92-month sentence.
Apparently, Judge Guilford did not agree with the government’s recommendation and sentenced Yee to an additional 14 months. Yee will most likely serve his sentence in a minimum-security federal prison somewhere in California.
If you or a loved one are being investigated by a federal agency or if you have been charged with a crime in Federal Court, it is imperative that you retain the services of an experienced federal criminal defense attorney. Contact the Law Office of Diane C. Bass today.