Pharmacist jailed for drugs offences

A pharmacist who stole almost £5,000 worth of prescription drugs which he then sold on the street has been jailed.

Niren Patel, 38, of Ilford, Essex, appeared at Snaresbrook Crown Court on Wednesday, 10 May, and pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud by abuse of a position of trust, possession with intent to supply a Class B drug and five counts of possession to supply a Class C drug.

He was sentenced on Friday, 16 June to a total of 12 months’ imprisonment.

An officer in the Met’s Controlled Drug Liaison team began an investigation in August 2016 after Patel’s employer, Day Lewis Pharmacy in Hornchurch, made a report of theft to the police.
Analysis of stock records and drugs purchased by Patel, who also worked at Hedgemans Pharmacy in Dagenham, revealed he had created fraudulent orders for almost £5,000 worth of prescription medicine.

In his police interview, Patel admitted he had sold the drugs, including Genotropin, a growth hormone used by bodybuilders, to a member of the public on the street.

Other drugs sold by Patel included the Class B drug Dexamfetamine, which is used for weight loss and to improve academic performance, and Class C drugs such as Xanax, Zolpidem and Diazepam, which are sedatives used as ‘downers’.

Patel was charged with the offences on Monday, 27 March. Detective Constable Beverley McInerney, of the Met’s Organised Crime Command, said, “Patel abused his position as a pharmacist by creating fraudulent orders for prescription drugs and then sold them on the street. The drugs he sold are highly addictive and dangerous when given to someone without a prescription.”

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