ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Watch video on Youtube »

 

some text
Chattanooga Police Department Crime Suppression Unit investigators Jonatan Watkins, left, and Lydell Blue remove medical records from Dr. Jerome Sherard's office at Skyview of Chattanooga Pain Management at 340 Holtzclaw Ave. Wednesday. Investigators from the DEA, TBI and Chattanooga Police Department Crime Suppression Unit closed the pain clinic Wednesday, serving a search warrant, interviewing patients and seizing records.
 
some text
Barbara Lang

Barbara Lang, known as "Aunt Bea," faces up to 210 years in prison after a jury convicted her of operating a handful of so-called pill mills in Chattanooga, including several operating under the names Superior One Pain Clinic and Primary Care Pain Clinic.

Her clinics prescribed more narcotics than all but 10 of the more than 20,000 prescribers in Tennessee, including amounts that prosecutors indicated were dangerous to consume.

Armed guards patrolled the parking lots, where customers waited in line to pay cash for powerful painkillers like oxycodone with little or no documented need, according to evidence presented at the federal court trial.

Some customers traveled for hours to get their drugs in Chattanooga, according to testimony by landlords, neighbors, customers and wiretaps.

The pill mills generated more than $4 million during the months they were in operation, including $175,000 that Lang didn't report to the IRS, prosecutors said.

Investigators found another $234,333 in cash at her house, along with a money-counting machine.

The jury found Lang, 60, of Rossville, guilty of conspiring to illegally distribute controlled substances -- oxycodone and Xanax -- at the clinics, and of operating drug-involved businesses at five of the six locations used by the clinics.

After a 25-day trial, the jury also found that Lang illegally structured her cash deposits at First Tennessee in order to avoid triggering currency transaction reporting requirements, according to a news release sent out by U.S. Attorney Bill Killian's office.

In addition to a possible 210-year prison sentence, Lang also faces forfeitures of up to $4 million.

Investigators have already seized $1 million as part of the case.

Three others charged along with Lang have already pleaded guilty. Lang's daughter, Faith Blake, pleaded guilty to a handful of similar charges, including conspiring to illegally distribute drugs through Superior One medical clinic and Elite Care medical clinic, to obstructing the IRS and failure to appear.

Jerome Sherad, Superior One's medical director, and Charles Larmore, a nurse practitioner employed at Superior One and Primary Care, both pleaded guilty to conspiring to illegally distribute drugs.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT