NEW YORK (AP) — A doctor who has an office at New York's Kennedy Airport is accused of selling oxycodone prescriptions to his patients, prosecutors said Thursday in announcing his arrest.
Dr. Gerald Surya, 45, was arrested Thursday morning at his Long Island home on 26 counts of criminal sale of a prescription, said Bridget Brennan, New York City's special narcotics prosecutor. Surya has treated airline pilots, but prosecutors said none of the patients who bought the prescriptions were airline pilots.
Surya was awaiting arraignment Thursday afternoon at Manhattan Criminal Court and it was unclear whether he had an attorney who could comment on his behalf. A woman who answered the phone at the doctor's home declined to comment on his arrest.
Surya, whose office is in a medical facility at the airport, is accused of writing prescriptions for people who didn't need them. Oxycodone is a narcotic used to treat pain.
According to authorities, Surya had been charging patients $60 for each prescription when they started their probe in 2013, but raised the price to $100 after investigators raided his Kennedy Airport office in July 2014.
Prosecutors said Surya, who had a second office in Valley Stream, often sold multiple prescriptions to patients for their families and friends. In some cases, a patient would leave the doctor's office with numerous prescriptions written for other people who never saw the doctor, Brennan said.
"By selling prescriptions for addictive drugs, Dr. Surya is charged with jeopardizing the health and well-being of his patients and the general public in order to line his own pockets," Brennan said in a statement.
Detectives and federal agents raided Surya's office Thursday morning and seized medical records, financial documents and computer equipment, prosecutors said.
Surya is a senior aviation medical examiner, meaning he is designated by the Federal Aviation Administration to be able to perform medical examinations on pilots and issue medical certificates. A spokeswoman for the FAA did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment Thursday.