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Ex-doctor in drug bust sentenced

By: Andy Kozlowski | Madison - Park News | Published July 23, 2019




MADISON HEIGHTS — A former physician has been sentenced to 64 months in federal prison for stealing the identities of other doctors to deliver prescription drugs to third parties.

Dimitar Cvetkoski, 41, of Warren, was arrested by Madison Heights detectives during a sting operation around Valentine’s Day in February. His sentence was handed down by U.S. District Court Judge Paul D. Borman in Detroit on July 15, after Cvetkoski pleaded guilty Feb. 21 to creating fraudulent controlled substance prescriptions using the identities of two local physicians.  

Cvetkoski’s attorney, Mike Rataj, said July 16 that he did not wish to comment on the case. 

The federal charges were brought forth by U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider and FBI Special Agent in Charge Timothy Slater. According to the federal government’s case, Cvetkoski posted advertisements on Craigslist to market the controlled substances, and he used the stolen identities of the two physicians to fill out prescriptions that he distributed or tried to distribute to third parties, and that he also used to directly obtain controlled substances for himself.

In addition, Cvetkoski admitted to credit card fraud and illicit possession of about 130 credit card numbers belonging to others. The suspect once had a license to practice medicine, but his license expired in 2010. Opioid-based drugs were among the various substances he was peddling.

“Dimitar Cvetkoski once took an oath to do no harm. His brazen criminal conduct, which endangered and victimized our community, was a grave betrayal of that promise,” Schneider previously said in a statement.

Police in Madison Heights did not say where Cvetkoski was arrested, but they did say that the suspect attempted to sell drugs to an undercover officer. The investigation also involved the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office’s Narcotics Enforcement Team and the Troy Special Investigations Unit.

At that time, Cvetkoski was charged with six felony counts in Madison Heights 43rd District Court, including three counts of controlled substance delivery and manufacture; one count of possessing personal identifying information with intent to commit identity theft; one count of stealing or retaining a financial transaction device without consent; and one count of counterfeit prescription forms. But the six district court charges were dismissed when the case moved to federal court.

On July 16, Madison Heights Police Lt. Michael Siladke said that the Madison Heights Police Department is proud to have taken a drug dealer and identity thief off the streets.

“In addition to removing the drugs, this arrest led to the identification of identity theft victims and the securing of numerous pieces of identifying information — names, dates of birth, credit card numbers,” Siladke said. “This sentence of 64 months is a satisfying conclusion to a case involving two types of crimes that have long-reaching consequences for the victims and their families.”

He said that identity theft is increasingly a problem due to the anonymity of the internet and the so-called “dark web,” where suspects can buy and sell the personally identifying information of others. The information is collected in scams over the internet, via phone calls and through the mail. 

“Everyone should remain vigilant and protective of all personal information, and only release that information to known and verified people and companies,” Siladke said. “Notifications to local police departments, credit card companies, credit bureaus and (the Federal Trade Commission) should be made if any personally identifying information has been compromised.”

Prescription drugs also continue to be abused, now more than ever amid the opioid crisis.

“The arrest and prosecution of people involved in the illegal sale of prescription drugs remains a priority of the Madison Heights Police Department,” Siladke said. “To that end, all cases involving prescription drugs are thoroughly investigated. We also maintain community partnerships with many agencies and bring resources to bear to help victims and their families.” 

Call Staff Writer Andy Kozlowski at (586) 279-1104.