Dr. Luigia Notaristefano, an internal medicine specialist associated with Putnam County Hospital, was arrested on January 26 on charges that she sold narcotics prescriptions to an undercover Putnam County sheriff. Dr. Notaristefano is charged with eight counts of a Putnam County sale of a prescription for a controlled substance, and one count of third degree criminal sale of a controlled substance. Each of these charges is a felony under the Penal Law of the State of New York. The most serious charge, third degree criminal sale of a controlled substance under section 220.39 of the Penal Law, is a class B Felony, carrying a maximum prison term of 25 years.
The investigation into Dr. Notaristefano was a joint effort by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, (DEA) the New York State Health Department, the Putnam County Sheriff and the Putnam County District Attorney’s Office, after it was learned that a doctor practicing in Putnam County was issuing a large number of narcotics prescriptions to her patients. The prescriptions were apparently for Vicodin, Valium and Suboxone, which is commonly prescribed to treat heroin addiction.
Dr. Notaristefano was arraigned by Carmel Town Justice Joseph Spofford and was released from the Putnam County jail on $25,000 bail. She is due back in the Southeast Town Court on February 3, 2009.
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