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Trial for Dallas Doctor Accused of Running Pill Mill

A federal trial is expected to begin Tuesday, Oct. 6 for a doctor who’s being accused of running a pill mill out of a pain clinic in Lake Highlands.

The Dallas doctor will be defending charges that he used his Lake Highlands pain clinic as a front for a drug trafficking scheme.

On Monday, Oct. 5, the U.S. attorney’s office and the doctor’s defense team selected a federal jury for the trial of Dr. T. Okechuku, 58, of Plano, who is accused of distributing hydrocodone outside the scope of his practice.

The opening arguments were expected to commence on Tuesday morning.

The prosecutors claim that Okechuku was conspiring with drug dealers by giving people the painkiller hydrocodone in exchange for cash payments, often without examining the patient. The dealers would hit the streets to sell the drugs at a profit.

Okechuku, a licensed anesthesiologist, was initially indicted back in December 2013. In addition to the drug charges, he’s facing firearms charges due to having armed security guards protecting the drug money.

Several others who were involved in the scheme have already pleaded guilty for their role in the alleged drug operation, one of which includes his business manager, I. Ezenagu.

According to prosecutors, Okechuku was working with six other individuals. Together, the group ran a profitable drug operation dating back to at least 2012 through Okechuku’s Dallas-based business, Medical Rehabilitation Clinic, which has since shut down.

Drug dealers would pay people to go to the clinic, which would only accept cash for office visits. Once at the clinic, the people would mostly receive prescriptions for hydrocodone, court records show.

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