FAIRFIELD, Conn. — A doctor with an office in Fairfield was sentenced Friday to two years of probation and 200 hours of community service for illegally prescribing oxycodone to an out-of-state couple, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.
Dr. Paul Bellofiore, 56, of Trumbull, was also banned from writing prescriptions for controlled substances until Oct. 13 when he was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson in Hartford.
He had pleaded guilty on Oct. 13, 2016 to one count of issuing unlawful prescriptions for oxycodone. Bellofiore has been prohibited from writing prescriptions since that time.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Bellofiore had two longtime patients — a married couple — who lived in Connecticut until 2011, when they relocated to Florida.
Bellofiore knew that, before they moved to Florida, the couple had unlawfully obtained forged prescriptions for opioid medications from his former medical assistant. As a result, Bellofiore should have been aware of the possibility that the couple was abusing or diverting their medications.
After moving to Florida, the couple traveled to Connecticut twice per year, scheduling medical appointments with Bellofiore during those visits. At the end of each appointment, he provided the couple with six months of predated prescriptions, including prescriptions for Oxycodone, to last until their next appointment.
At times, the couple was unable to travel to Connecticut. Bellofiore then left the predated prescriptions for a friend or relative of the couple to pick up from his office. It was Bellofiore's understanding that the friend or relative would fill the prescriptions each month at a pharmacy in Connecticut and mail the medications to the couple in Florida.
In February 2016, Bellofiore provided a stack of prescriptions to a friend of the married couple. The prescriptions, which were improperly dated to make it appear that they were issued at monthly intervals after February 2016, authorized the couple to receive thousands of pills of oxycodone and Percocet, a medication containing oxycodone.
He also failed to include on the prescriptions the couple’s address in Florida, which might have alerted a pharmacist filling the prescriptions in Connecticut to the possibility that the medications were being abused or diverted.
The couple diverted a significant amount of their medications through a middleman for street-level resale in and around Waterbury.
The Controlled Substances Act prohibits physicians from dispensing any Schedule II controlled substance, including oxycodone, without a valid written prescription. The prescription must be “dated as of, and signed on, the day when issued” and “bear the full name and address of the patient.” A practitioner also may not issue multiple prescriptions at any single time authorizing a patient to receive more than a 90-day supply of a Schedule II controlled substance.