Niagara Gazette

Local News

October 9, 2012

Former doctor Mehta seeking dismissal

Niagara Gazette — BUFFALO — After half a dozen delays, the defense team for former Falls physician Pravin Mehta is asking a federal magistrate judge to dismiss a 28-count indictment that accuses him of being at the center of a massive illegal prescription drug distribution operation.

The request to dismiss the indictment is contained in a 92-page filing that also asks U.S. Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder to bar prosecutors from using at trial any statements made by Mehta or any of his co-defendants or co-conspirators. 

The defense motion also demands what is known as a "Bill of Particulars", which asks for the names of undercover agents and confidential informants, as well as very specific information about the drugs Mehta illegally prescribed and exactly where and when he gave out those prescriptions.

Defense attorney Herbert Greenman, co-counsel for Mehta with Joel Daniels, also asks that Schroeder throw out any evidence seized during a search of the one-time doctor's Main Street medical office on the day he was arrested. Greenman also demands that everything that agents seized, from computers to patient records to every individual prescription slip written by Mehta, be returned.

Greenman had been asking for extensions of time to file his motions since March. The filing finally came on Sept. 6.

In his request to dismiss the indictment, Greenman says Mehta can not defend himself against the charges because he doesn't understand what he did wrong.

"Every count alleges that Dr. Mehta issued prescriptions to patients 'without a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of professional practice'," Greenman wrote. "That phrase has no specific definition nor do we believe that it has any legal value. Simply put, without any structure or definition, there is no way that Dr. Mehta can defend against the charges in the indictment."

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