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N4T Investigators: Prescription Fraud

TUCSON – State authorities have launched an investigation over claims that an employee of a local cancer center has been stealing opioids that are meant for patients.

According to court documents, law enforcement has made contact with four victims of what they are calling a prescription fraud scheme.

Investigators believe the crimes started last March and continued until last month.

According to court documents reviewed by the News 4 Tucson Investigators, authorities say the suspect is a scheduler at Banner Health Cancer Center.

As part of the scheme, authorities say the suspect would pose as a pharmacy employee. They would contact patients and tell them their medication is expired or being recalled. The suspect would then show up to the victim’s home, and collect the medication – including OxyContin and morphine.

As part of their investigation, special agents from the Arizona Attorney General’s Office served a search warrant at the suspect’s west side townhouse.

The News 4 Tucson Investigators went to that townhouse, but no one answered the door. We left a business card, and a person called us back, saying they do not know the suspect.

At this point, authorities won’t say if they’ve made an arrest in the case.

Banner Health confirms the employee who is under investigation is no longer with the company.

In a statement, Banner Health told us:

“We are unable to comment on pending personnel or law enforcement actions. However, we at Banner Health take prescription drug fraud very seriously. We work closely with the Attorney General and Arizona law enforcement agencies and applaud their vigorous efforts to protect our communities.”

The News 4 Tucson Investigators will continue to follow developments in this case.

If you have something you would like us to look into, email us at investigators@kvoa.com or call the News 4 Tucson Investigators tip-line at (520) 955-4444.

Paul Birmingham

Paul Birmingham

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