Dr. Julio Gabriel Diaz, a medical doctor known as the “Candy Man” to his patients was convicted for illegal trafficking of highly addictive pain medications. He was found guilty on 79 counts of writing fake prescriptions for powerful painkillers such as OxyContin, and Dilaudid to patients who typically waited hours for a 10 minute consultation. As many as 20 of his patients died of overdoses due to him prescribing larger quantities, and more lethal drug combinations. Diaz originally opened the Family Medical Clinic as a geriatric practice for underprivileged senior citizens, but later expanded it to cover pain management.
Diaz claimed that he prescribed the drugs as an altruistic measure to keep his patients off the streets, and out of the hands of criminal black market drug dealers. “If you don’t give them the medications, they are going to go to the street. What is the worse of two evils?” he stated. He continued to prescribe these medications to suspected abusers in hopes of somehow managing their consumption. “I do feel responsible,” he said about his patients who died. “I was the one providing the medications, and perhaps there were some hints there that I should have known they were going to overdose.” Furthermore, some female patients complained that they exchanged sexual acts for drugs from Diaz.
For years before his arrest, area doctors and patient relatives complained to the state medical board to no avail. One emergency room doctor reported that 410 of his patients had to receive emergency medical care due to intoxication in the span of two years. “We see at least one patient a month who is admitted for detoxification from excessively high doses of narcotics after seeing Dr. Diaz,” wrote three doctors and a nurse to the state medical board. Despite being charged for 79 counts of distributing a controlled substance, Diaz was not charged with wrongful death, but is expected to serve at least twenty years in prison, if not a life sentence.
If you are suffering due to the wrongful death of a loved one at the hands of negligent doctors, the lawyers at Hodes Milman Liebeck are there for you in your time of need. Contact us today online at hmlm.com or call (949) 640-8222 for a complimentary case evaluation.