News & Politics

Oxycodone Menace: Doctor Accused in Fatal Overdoses of Two Patients


The feds have indicted a Long Island doctor and his office assistant with killing two patients by over-prescribing the highly addictive painkiller Oxycodone, and conspiring to illegally distribute the drug.

William Conway, the 69-year-old doctor, of Flushing, and Robert Hachemeister, 67, of Baldwin, N.Y., were scheduled to be arraigned in federal court this afternoon.

In April, 2011, Giovanni Manzella fatally overdosed on oxy after Conway gave him prescriptions for 450 pills. In October, Christopher Basmas also fatally overdosed two days after Conway gave him a prescription for 180 pills. After Basmas died, Conway tried to cover up his involvement by altering office records.

Meanwhile, Hachemeister had no medical qualifications, but he distributed thousands of oxy pills using prescriptions pre-signed by Conway.

Conway was arrested back in June for selling almost 800,000 Oxy pills to a bunch of people between 2009 and 2012 for no medical purpose, often to people he had never treated or even met. Even after he lost his license to legally give out the drugs, he kept issuing prescriptions, the feds say.

United States Attorney Loretta Lynch called the oxy problem a “menace which has swelled to epic proportions in our nation and in our communities. “Sworn to do no harm, Conway allegedly turned his back on his patients’ real needs and turned instead to the pursuit of easy money. The charges unsealed today reflect the tragic consequences of prescription drug trafficking and abuse,” Lynch said.


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