Clay County police raided the Total Medical Express clinic off of Blanding Boulevard in Orange Park, Florida and made several arrests of some of its patients and an office manager, according to an article on FirstCoastnews.com. The police allege that the pain clinic was unlicensed and was giving out narcotic drugs like Oxycontin to people without performing the proper medical procedures. Police claim that people come from all over the southeast, pay cash for the pills without the proper medical exam and diagnosis and then use and/or sell the pills on the street. Clay County police indicated they expect to make more arrests relating to Total Medical Express in the near future.
Going after pain clinics has been a major focus of the police here in Duval County, Clay County and Nassau County and other parts of Florida by both local police and federal law enforcement. As abuse of pain pills has become more popular and arrests for illegal possession of pain pills have increased at a much greater rate than more traditional drug crimes such as marijuana, cocaine, crack and methamphetamine, law enforcement officials are focusing on the source of these pills. Whenever they get word that a pain clinic has a long line of people who are getting these pills after very brief appointments, the police are likely going to start an investigation into the facility’s practices.
As lawyers handling criminal cases in the Jacksonville, North Florida and Southeast Georgia area, we have seen a lot of these cases over the last couple of years. The police are not just arresting patients; they are arresting the pain clinic employees, doctors and anyone with an ownership interest in the pain clinics. Under Florida law, it does not take very many pills to be subject to very serious penalties. As a result, just about all of these cases, from the patients to the office manager to the doctor to the owner, can become very serious.