A former pharmacy director at a prominent New York hospital was arrested and indicted on drug charges this week after authorities discovered he had allegedly stolen $5.6 million worth of oxycodone pills.
Anthony D'Alessandro, who ran Beth Israel Medical Center's pharmacy for 14 years, was arrested at his Staten Island home this morning and has been charged with drug trafficking, criminal drug possession and grand larceny. According to the city's Special Narcotics Prosecutor, D'Alessandro stole nearly 200,000 pills from the hospital between January 2009 and April 2014. He allegedly used his position to access the narcotics vault, made false entries in the hospital's inventory system and even filled out fraudulent prescriptions for his wife, ultimately obtaining a whopping 193,376 pills worth approximately $5.6 million on the black market.
Investigators say D'Alessandro's painkiller pilfering was caught by hospital administrators after Beth Israel's parent company merged with Mount Sinai Medical Center. He was suspended and then fired on April 29, 2014. "This case underscores the vigilance required when addictive medication with a high resale value is readily available—even to licensed professionals and trusted employees," Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget Brennan said in a statement today. According to a statement from Mount Sinai spokesperson Sid Dinsay:
When an anonymous complaint was received by the new administration at Mount Sinai Beth Israel, Mount Sinai immediately conducted a comprehensive internal investigation and brought the results of our extensive investigation to the appropriate authorities. The individual was promptly suspended and then terminated. The administration of the Mount Sinai Health System and its hospitals have zero tolerance for theft and illegal activities and have been working closely with the district attorney's office throughout its investigation to assist in the prosecution.