Three healthcare professionals have been charged in a 52-count federal indictment unsealed today in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia.
The indictment describes an alleged conspiracy to distribute “massive quantities” of controlled substances, including highly addictive opioids, in violation of federal law, said David H. Estes, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. The charges include one count of Distribution and Dispensation of Controlled Substances Resulting in Death by Dr. Wallace Steven Anderson, 67, of Douglas, Ga., a charge that carries a minimum statutory sentence of 20 years in prison, up to life. There is no parole in the federal system.
“Our efforts to eradicate the illegal distribution of dangerous and addictive drugs in our neighborhoods target both the shadowy street dealers and white-coated prescribers alike,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Estes. “With our law enforcement partners, we will continue to bring to justice those who would spread poison in our communities.”
Named in the indictment are:
- Dr. Anderson, charged with Conspiracy; Distribution and Dispensation of Controlled Substances Resulting in Death; 48 counts of Unlawful Distribution and Dispensation of Controlled Substances; Conspiracy to Commit Healthcare Fraud; and Conspiracy to Launder Monetary Instruments;
- Bridgett Stephanie Taylor, 55, of Broxton, Ga., a Nurse Practitioner working under Anderson, charged with Conspiracy; eight counts of Unlawful Distribution and Dispensation of Controlled Substances; Conspiracy to Commit Healthcare Fraud; and Conspiracy to Launder Monetary Instruments; and,
- Wandle Keith Butler, 57, of Douglas, a Physician Assistant working under Anderson, charged with Conspiracy; three counts of Unlawful Distribution and Dispensation of Controlled Substances; Conspiracy to Commit Healthcare Fraud; and Conspiracy to Launder Monetary Instruments.
As described in the Indictment, Anderson is the owner of Steve Anderson, PC, and Steve Anderson Behavioral Health, both located in Douglas, Ga. Taylor and Butler worked for Anderson. The indictment alleges that from February 1, 2016, to September 30, 2020, the three operated or assisted in operating “nominal pain management and addiction facilities which dispensed controlled substances without any legitimate medical purpose.”
Criminal indictments contain only charges; defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
The case was investigated under the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach.
The investigation is being conducted by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s Savannah Resident Office; the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations; and Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General and prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Matthew A. Josephson and Bradford C. Patrick.