DAYTONA BEACH, FL — Anticipating Joseph Wagner would bolt for the Dominican Republic where he was supposed to marry a prostitute, the FBI arrested the 62-year-old chiropractor in May, charging him with dispensing controlled substances and health care fraud according to federal investigator.
Wagner’s practice — Wagner Chiropractic and Acupuncture Clinic — was raided in August 2011 by the FBI and other federal agencies. The agents were seeking any evidence that would show Wagner was dispensing controlled substances — specifically Xanax and Lortab — and defrauding insurance companies, according to a criminal complaint.
Not only were patient records seized at the Daytona Beach clinic, but financial and computer records were also taken. Wagner’s financial records revealed he has a bank account in the Dominican Republic — where he went to medical school — for $76,800. That’s the equivalent of about $3 million pesos in that country, the complaint shows.
After the raid, state and federal investigators revealed Wagner was linked to a West Palm Beach doctor who investigators said allowed Wagner to use the doctor’s Drug Enforcement Administration license. That enabled Wagner to prescribe pain medications to his chiropractic patients, investigators said. State law prohibits chiropractors from prescribing medication.
The license of that medical doctor — John Christensen — was suspended by the state, as was Wagner’s, records show. Christensen said Friday he never gave Wagner permission to use his name for prescriptions.
According to the complaint released Friday though, Wagner used the names of other medical doctors for the prescriptions, as well. The prescription pads Wagner used were pre-stamped and pre-signed using the names of those doctors, the complaint shows. Christensen’s name appeared on some of the prescription bottles of Wagner’s patients, investigators said.
All of the patients were given Xanax, Lortab and the muscle relaxer Soma, the complaint shows. Some of the patients received their drugs monthly, others got them weekly, the complaint shows. Patients who had no insurance paid Wagner $100 monthly and were given their drugs that way, the complaint shows.
The patients said they received a “back crack” from Wagner and office visits never lasted more than five minutes, the complaint shows.
Investigators learned Wagner traveled to the Dominican Republic twice in April. Both were round-trip journeys.
But when he booked a trip to Santiago, Dominican Republic, for May 16, it was a one-way ticket, the complaint shows.
“On May 15, I received a call from the confidential source,” FBI agent Groeschner wrote in the complaint. “Joseph Wagner planned to remain in the Dominican Republic for at least a month, and intended to marry a prostitute he met there before allegedly returning to the United States at an unspecified, later date.”
Source: Orlando Sentinel