Pharmacist faces federal drug charges
The owner of a Madera Pharmacy, along with two other men, was arrested this week on a federal indictment of alleged illegal distribution of powerful narcotic painkillers oxycodone and hydrocodone.
Pharmacist Ifeanyi Vincent Ntukogu, 44, who lives in Fresno, faces one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute controlled substances, along with 17 counts of distribution of controlled substances.
Since opening it in February 2014, Ntukogu has owned and operated New Life Pharmacy at 483 E. Almond Ave.
According to court documents, from December 2014 to November 2018, Ntukogu filled fraudulent, forged prescriptions for the drugs, then dispensed them to Fresno residents Kelo White, 38, and Donald Ray Pierre, 50.
White and Pierre also face charges as part of a 42-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury on April 11.
In the time period when the crimes are suspected to have occurred, New Life Pharmacy ordered and received more than 340,200 oxycodone pills and 758,900 hydrocodone pills, according to the indictment.
Ntukogu was arrested Tuesday at his pharmacy, and White and Pierre were arrested at their homes in Fresno.
If convicted, Ntukogu, White and Pierre each face a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine in connection with the drug charges.
Additionally, Pierre faces a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine in connection with additional charges of identity theft.