Jeffrey Gundel, age 51, an orthopedic surgeon from Gansevoort, New York, was sentenced today to 78 months in prison for illegally authorizing the distribution of tens of thousands of oxycodone pills.

The announcement was made by United States Attorney Richard S. Hartunian and Special Agent in Charge James J. Hunt, New York Division, Drug Enforcement Administration.

On December 3, 2014, Gundel pled guilty to one count of unlawful distribution of oxycodone. As part of his guilty plea, Gundel admitted that, between May 2011 and April 2014, he wrote over 200 prescriptions authorizing the dispensation of at least 59,520 30-milligram oxycodone tablets for no legitimate medical purpose. Gundel also admitted that he received cash kickbacks after co-conspirators filled the prescriptions and sold the oxycodone pills on the black market. On several occasions, Gundel prescribed oxycodone to undercover law enforcement agents he never met, treated, or communicated with in any way.

U.S. District Judge Mae A. D’Agostino also sentenced Gundel to a term of 3 years of supervised release, to be served following his release from prison. In sentencing Gundel, Judge D’agostino told him that he “became a common criminal drug dealer” and that there was “no way to quantify how many people became addicted to oxycodone because of your actions.”

Oxycodone is an addictive and often abused Schedule II narcotic prescribed to treat severe pain. The typical street value of a single tablet of the type prescribed by Gundel ranges from $30 to $45.

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