A psychiatrist who practices at a Santa Ana clinic has been arrested on federal charges that allege he issued prescriptions for dangerous and addictive narcotics, such as the opioid oxycodone, without a medical purpose.
Dr. Robert Tinoco Perez, 56, of Westminster, was arrested Friday by special agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Perez was named in a 14-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury on June 27. The indictment charges Perez with selling prescriptions to drug customers, as well as to brokers who sold the drugs obtained from filling the prescriptions and split the profits with Perez.
Perez wrote prescriptions for “patients” he had never met or examined, including an undercover officer, according to the indictment. Perez and his co-conspirators allegedly created fictitious medical records for drug customers to provide justification for their prescriptions.
The drugs alleged to have been prescribed illegally by Perez included oxycodone and hydrocodone (both opioid pain medications), amphetamine salts (sold primarily under the brand name Adderall), and alprazolam (sold primarily under the brand name Xanax).
Perez is also charged with possession with intent to distribute nearly one ounce of methamphetamine.
Perez pleaded not guilty and was ordered to stand trial on August 21.
Perez’s license to practice had been placed on probation for 35 months last December, due to his ill treatment of patients, family members, an Orange County judge and a Medical Board of California investigator, according to state officials.
The order for Dr. Robert T. Perez went into effect on Dec. 8. That was after Perez and his Santa Ana attorney Lee J. Retros had signed a letter in September accepting the medical board’s allegations and punishment against the psychiatrist, which includes seeing a psychiatrist. State records cited Perez’s behavior toward numerous people and care and treatment of a patient identified as M.M..
Perez had additional proceeding filed against him by the Medical Board in May 2018. It alleges three causes of discipline – sexual exploitation, sexual misconduct and unprofessional conduct – because Perez had sex with a patient he went on to marry. The Board also claims he failed to adhere to terms of his December 2018 probation. He failed to complete the educational courses required by the probation.
A second defendant charged in the federal criminal indictment – William Jason Plumley, 40, of Huntington Beach – is alleged to have sold both prescriptions written by Perez and the drugs filled from his prescriptions. Plumley already is in federal custody on a previous indictment alleging that he sold methamphetamine.