Compassionate Care Clinic office manager is sentenced to one year and one day in prison.
Susan Moyer, 58, the former co-owner and office manager of the Compassionate Care Clinic in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, was sentenced to one year and one day in federal prison this month for illegal oxycodone distribution. According to court records, Moyer and her co-defendant, Steven Kotsonis, M.D., operated the clinic as a “pill mill, issuing baseless prescriptions for high doses of oxycodone and other opioids in exchange for cash.” A least two patients overdosed on oxycodone and died as a result of their scheme.
Moyer was not a licensed health professional and had no medical training. Despite this, she wrote prescriptions, which Kotsonis would sign without actually seeing the patient. “Individuals frequently obtained prescriptions at the Compassionate Care Clinic without being examined or having their vitals (i.e., height, weight, blood pressure) taken during their visit,” court records indicate. During an office visit to the Compassionate Care, Moyer was recorded by undercover investigators referring to herself as the “Oxy Czar.” This damning evidence ultimately led to her arrest.
“This case underscores the Justice Department’s commitment to combatting the opioid crisis,” said United States Attorney Krueger in late 2019. “Far too many Wisconsinites have seen loved ones suffer from an opioid addiction or, worse, an overdose. Because the path to addiction often begins with prescription opioids, we are committed to investigating and prosecuting prescribers like Kotsonis who deal drugs behind the façade of medical practice.”
Moyer and Kotsonis each pleaded guilty to the felony charges against them, and in July 2020, Kotsonis was also sentenced to year and a day in federal prison. He admitted, as part of his plea, that in 2012, he relocated his practice from the Beaver Medical Clinic and changed the name to the Compassionate Care Clinic and that the two began to use their positions to write illegitimate prescriptions. They took full advantage of the addiction crisis, soaring under the radar at the time, using their clinic as a front. Investigators found patients typically paid $200 to $350 per prescription.
Acting United States Attorney Frohling stated, “The Department of Justice is committed to using all available tools to stop those involved in fueling the opioid crisis. I commend the hard work and dedication of the investigators, agents, analysts, and attorneys involved in seeking to bring justice to the individuals harmed by the actions of Ms. Moyer and Mr. Kotsonis.”
“The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and its law enforcement partners are committed to investigating and bringing to justice individuals who use their positions of trust to become drug dealers for personal profit,” said DEA Wisconsin Assistant Special Agent in Charge John McGarry. “This investigation is an example of DEA’s resolve to hold irresponsible medical professionals accountable for their actions.”
This case was investigated as a collaborate effort between the DEA, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and the Waukesha County Drug Metro Unit. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Laura S. Kwaterski.