Nurse sentenced for trafficking at Mentor, Mayfield Heights ‘pill mills’
The nurse involved in a “pill mill” operating at Mentor, Mayfield Heights and Fairview Park diet clinics was sentenced Nov. 1 to 18 months probation.
Maria Siwik, 48, of Hinckley, previously pleaded guilty to multiple felony trafficking counts before Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Sherrie Miday.
On March 25, 2015, a search warrant was executed at Diet Med Weight Clinic Inc. in the 7000 block of Mentor Avenue in Mentor.
After seizing large quantities of amphetamines, plus medical and financial records, a law enforcement task force closed all three locations.
Siwik and her three co-defendants were charged in a combined 227-count indictment.
Clinic owner Janet Paulino, 71, of North Olmsted, and her live-in daughter, 47-year-old Virginia Paulino, are scheduled to be sentenced Nov. 14.
Janet Paulino previously pleaded guilty to multiple trafficking offenses. Her daughter pleaded guilty to permitting drug abuse and attempted money laundering charges.
Clinic Dr. Rogaciano Trocio, a 77-year-old Medina man, pleaded guilty to multiple trafficking and money laundering charges and agreed to surrender his medical license.
Trocio died before he could be sentenced.
Officials said the clinics illegally sold more than a million doses of phentermine, which can cause heart attacks, kidney failure, seizures and death.
Prosecutors said during an 18-month period, investigators — including a visibly pregnant woman — were able to buy drugs at the clinics with little standard medical screening and without pharmacies.
Officials with the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy led the investigation.
The other clinics were located on Golden Gate Boulevard in Mayfield Heights and Lorain Road in Fairview Park.
According to the indictment, the clinics were fronts to traffic scheduled stimulants with no legitimate therapeutic purpose.
By Staff report, The News-Herald