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Rockland County man charged with distributing drugs involved in overdose death

WHITE PLAINS – Federal authorities announced the arrest of Craig Oleksowicz  for illegally distributing oxymorphone, a Schedule II controlled substance, the use of which caused the October 2011 death of a 21-year-old man in Pearl River, New York. Oleksowicz   was additionally charged with illegally distributing codeine, methadone, and Valium pills. Oleksowicz was presented before a U.S. magistrate in White Plains federal court on Thursday.

Between at least February 2011 and October 2011, Oleksowicz  , 37, of Pearl River, New York, and others regularly distributed Oleksowicz  ’s prescription oxymorphone pills for profit. Oxymorphone is a powerful painkiller with a high potential for addiction and abuse, and its improper use may be fatal. In October 2011, the use of oxymorphone pills supplied by Oleksowicz   caused the overdose death of a young man residing in Pearl River, New York. Following that death, Oleksowicz   continued his illegal distribution of pills, selling codeine, methadone, and Valium pills on at least three separate occasions in February 2012.

If convicted, Oleksowicz   faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 20 years in prison, a maximum penalty of life in prison, and a maximum fine of $1 million or twice the gain or loss resulting from the crime.

“As has been reported, prescription drug trafficking and abuse is an exploding epidemic, claiming the lives of almost 15,000 people a year, more than illegal street drugs like heroin and cocaine combined”, U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said.  “As alleged, the defendant was essentially an outlaw pharmacy, and worse, a lethal one. The illegal dealers of prescription drugs will not get any easier treatment from this Office simply because what they are selling can be legally used when properly prescribed. We will not relent in combating this new drug scourge. We commend the teamwork and professionalism of our federal and local partners that led to this arrest.”