PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A group of Rhode Islanders is being accused of using fraudulent prescriptions to obtain opioid pills in what federal prosecutors call “a scheme to profit from the addiction epidemic.”
The U.S Attorney’s Office on Friday announced charges against five people in connection with the alleged scheme:
- Robert Rose, 51, of Providence
- David Rose, 58, of Providence
- Tammy Bonham, 53, of Providence
- Victoria Coccia-Rose, 28, of Pawtucket
- Michael Slonski, 47, of Johnston
All five are charged with conspiracy to unlawfully acquire and distribute a controlled substance, conspiracy to commit health care fraud, and aggravated identity theft.
Prosecutors accuse Robert Rose of leading the scheme, and claim he directed some of it while incarcerated at the ACI. According to court documents, prosecutors claim Rose bought the identities of several individuals and doctors and also obtained blank prescription forms.
Prosecutors said the group used the stolen information and forms to write up prescriptions for varying amounts of Oxycodone pills. The suspects either brought the fraudulent prescriptions to pharmacies or recruited others to do it. According to prosecutors, the suspects often paid for the pills with illegally-obtained medical insurance. Once they had the pills, prosecutors said the suspects sold them to others for cash.
All five suspects answered to the charges in federal court and were released on unsecured bond.