Fake Online Pharmacy Owner Sentenced to 8 Years in Prison
Juan Gallinal, a former Virginia police officer, acted as the head of a Florida conspiracy that used a valid brick-and-mortar pharmacy as a cover for series of fake pharmacy websites that sold misbranded and addictive drugs.
The owner of a fake online pharmacy business in Florida has been sentenced to eight years in prison, the Department of Justice (DOJ) reports. According to the DOJ, Gallinal and his associates turned “a small brick and mortar drugstore into a massive online pill mill that spread addiction across the country.”
Gallinal and his co-conspirators forged prescriptions for customers and filled orders for customers without requiring valid prescriptions. The DOJ notes, “At times the conspirators simply looked for a physician in the same geographic area as the customer, with a similar sounding name, and filled the prescription using the physician’s DEA number without the physician’s knowledge.”
According to his indictment, Juan Gallinal’s fake online pharmacy/pill mill was operational and shipping to U.S. customers from 2002-2012. The indictment described Gallinall as “a former police officer who controlled and managed Discount Pharmacy, frontierpharmacies.com, and their related websites and entities. At all times, Juan Gallinal served as the leader of the drug trafficking organization and conspiracy.” Gallinal is estimated by the DOJ to have made over $9 million from the sale of illicit & misbranded drugs between 2009-2012.
Gallinal’s indictment also describes how he encouraged workers to sell to customers that were addicts so as to increase profits. The conspirators laundered the money they made via the brick-and-mortar Discount Pharmacy’s bank accounts. By so doing, they concealed the nature of the illicit Internet sales.
Discount Pharmacy, although the base of operations for all of Gallinal’s Internet drug sales, was never registered with the Florida State Pharmacy Board or the DEA as an Internet pharmacy.
Pharmacy Times reports that Gallinal pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances by means of the internet, conspiracy to introduce misbranded prescription drugs, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and destruction, alteration, and concealment of records.
The DOJ identifies 5 other defendants who worked with Gallinal and have been sentenced in the case:
Craig Greer, 43, of Hollywood, Florida, was sentenced to 60 months in prison;
Kevin Kogan, 48, of Cedar Park, Texas, was sentenced to 30 months in prison;
Jordan Truxell, 26, of Davie, Florida served as the registered agent for Discount Pharmacy dba frontierpharmacies.com. He was sentenced to a year in prison in June 2016;
Thomas Brooke, 54, of Cooper City, Florida, the bookkeeper for Discount Pharmacy, was sentenced in March 2016 to 60 months in prison;
Ali Lovins, 44, of Cooper City, Florida is a registered nurse and was the office manager for Discount Pharmacy. Lovins was sentenced in March 2016 to 36 months in prison.
This case was an Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation, providing supplemental federal funding to the federal and state agencies involved. The Portland Tactical Diversion Squad that is comprised of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Portland Police Bureau investigated the case. The Food and Drug and Administration (FDA) – Florida, and DEA Miami Field Division, provided substantial investigative assistance. Assistant United States Attorneys Mike Lang, Francis Franze-Nakamura and Brian Werner prosecuted the case.