Canfield doctor indicted for illegally prescribing pain meds


By Joe Gorman

jgorman@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

A Canfield doctor is facing a 78-count indictment on charges he was illegally prescribing drugs to patients from 2012 to 2015.

A Mahoning County grand jury Thursday indicted William Paloski, 73, of Western Reserve Road, on charges including trafficking in drugs and illegal processing of drug documents.

Assistant Prosecutor Martin Desmond said Paloski was improperly prescribing painkillers. He declined to be more specific.

Paloski was issued a summons to appear in court, Desmond said. He is not in custody.

Paloski could not be reached for comment. A message on the phone listed for his office said the number was no longer in service. He is a graduate of the Kansas City College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Desmond would not comment on whether the investigation is still ongoing or if other people are being investigated. He did say people were coming to Paloski looking to get prescriptions for painkillers and other types of drugs.

On the drug-trafficking charges, Desmond said those were broken down per patient for a specific amount of time, with the longest period for a particular patient being from February 2012 to January 2015.

The drugs Paloski is accused of illegally prescribing include alpazolam, tramadol, codeine, diazepam, zolpidem and others to 16 patients and an undercover officer. Some of the patients received prescriptions for more than one drug, according to the indictment.

Charges Paloski faces are trafficking in drugs, illegal processing of drug documents, unlawful sale or delivery of dangerous drugs, money laundering and engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity.

Desmond would not indicate how the investigation started other than to say the Mahoning Valley Law Enforcement Task Force had received information the doctor may have been illegally dealing in prescription drugs.

Vindicator files show Paloski faced similar charges in 1982, when he was indicted on 33 counts of illegally processing drug documents. The case was dismissed in January 1985.

According to state records, Dr. Paloski’s license was suspended in September 2015 because there was evidence he was in violation of state regulations about prescribing controlled substances.

In March 2016, his license was returned on a limited basis, but he was not allowed to “utilize any controlled substances,” according to the records. In October, his license was limited, allowing him to practice medicine and surgery, but he was still not allowed to use any controlled substances.

In December, records show Paloski asked to submit a plan for his practice as well as have another physician monitor his practice, including the number of prescriptions he would dispense, and to take a course on prescribing controlled substances.

According to state records, his license is still active, but a spokeswoman for the state medical board said in an email late Thursday “there is action against it.”

Paloski’s attorney, David Betras, said he had no comment on the indictment because he had not seen it.

The doctor is scheduled to be arraigned next week in common pleas court.

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