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Post date: April 8 2003

Drug Diverter Gets 4-to-12 Year Prison Term For Selling Narcotics To Undercover Officer And Jumping Bail

Attorney General Spitzer today announced that a former Washington Heights man who jumped bail after pleading guilty to selling potent painkillers to an undercover police officer was sentenced to four-to-twelve years in state prison.

Marino Eusebio, 51, now of 1443 West Liberty Street in Allentown, Pennsylvania, appeared yesterday before Acting Manhattan Supreme Court Justice John Cataldo and was sentenced to three-to-nine years in prison on the underlying offense of Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree and one-to-three years for the bail jumping conviction. The sentences are to run consecutively.

Eusebio was arrested last month on an outstanding 1998 warrant after Allentown police stopped him for a traffic infraction, and discovered the outstanding bail jumping warrant filed by the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit following his failure to appear for sentencing on the felony drug sale charge. Waiving extradition, Eusebio was arraigned and pleaded guilty to the bail jumping charge on March 24th in Manhattan Supreme Court.

Eusebio was charged in June 1997 with operating a black market drug diversion scam out of his Manhattan apartment. He bought prescription medications from Medicaid patients at a significant discount and then resold them to local pharmacies.

According to the charges filed in the case, Eusebio bought a quantity of prescription medications from undercover investigators on June 20, 1997. Among the drugs purchased were the HIV medications Zerit and Epivir, as well as Diflucan (an antifungal medication), Zovirax (for the treatment of herpes), Biaxin (an antibiotic), and Zantac (for the relief of heartburn). He was also charged with selling 500 tablets of the powerful painkiller Percocet to one of the undercover agents.

In November 1997, Marino Eusebio pleaded guilty to Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree in satisfaction of the charges pending against him. The following month he failed to appear for sentencing.

The case was prosecuted by Special Assistant Attorney General Mark P. Cannon, of the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit's New York City Regional Office. Assisting in the investigation were Special Investigators Robert Crook and William Diaz.