Texas Woman Pleads Guilty to Narcotics and Money Laundering Conspiracy Charges for Opioid Pill Mill that Shipped Drugs Interstate

             Angela Gillespie-Shelton, a.k.a. “Boss Lady” and “Angotti”, 54, of Houston, Texas woman who helped lead an interstate narcotics trafficking ring pleaded guilty today to federal criminal charges arising out of an opioid buy-back scheme in which a doctor at a Los Angeles clinic prescribed opioids to putative patients that the clinic bought back and sold on the black market in California and Texas.  

        From October 2012 to January 2015, Gillespie-Shelton and her co-conspirators ran Southfork Medical Clinic, located in the Harvard Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles. At the time, Gillespie-Shelton primarily was based in Texas, but she frequently traveled to California. At the clinic, Gillespie-Shelton’s co-conspirator – Dr. Madhu Garg, 69, of Glendora – saw “patients” and regularly prescribed them narcotics. The drugs included oxycodone and hydrocodone (commonly sold under the brand names Vicodin, Norco and Lortab), alprazolam (best known by the brand name Xanax), carisoprodol (a muscle relaxant sold under the brand name Soma) and promethazine with codeine (a cough syrup sold on the street as “purple drank” and “sizzurp”). After the “patients” filled the prescriptions, Gillespie-Shelton and her co-conspirators bought the drugs from their “patients” and shipped them to Texas, where they were sold on the black market. Gillespie-Shelton’s co-conspirators also stole a physician’s identity to issue falsified prescriptions to obtain additional narcotics. In Texas, Gillespie-Shelton used two pharmacies that she controlled as a front to sell the drugs shipped from Southfork on the black market. Under Gillespie-Shelton’s control, the pharmacies in Texas also filled false or fraudulent prescriptions and received kickbacks from the fake prescriptions.Gillespie-Shelton also laundered more than $1 million from the diversion schemes through numerous accounts. She used some of the money to further the narcotics trafficking conspiracy, which included paying rent for the Southfork Clinic and a stash house in Los Angeles, as well as paying Garg more than $200,000 for writing the illegal prescriptions. 

Garg pleaded guilty in February 2016 to illegally distributing oxycodone and money laundering, and she served an 18-month prison sentence. Gillespie-Shelton will face a statutory maximum sentence of 40 years in federal prison.

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