Complaint Filed Against Pharmacist
Thu Aug 15, 9:30 PM ET

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - In an act with more symbolism than practical effect, the state pharmacy board filed a complaint Thursday against a Kansas City pharmacist already in prison for diluting cancer drugs.

Robert Courtney pleaded guilty in February to diluting chemotherapy medications in a money-making scheme federal authorities have suggested may have affected as many as 400 doctors, 4,200 patients and 98,000 prescriptions.

Because Courtney has surrendered his pharmacist license and is in prison awaiting sentencing, the Missouri Board of Pharmacy complaint "might be a formality," said Jim Grebing, spokesman for the Department of Economic Development, which oversees the board.

But Grebing added, "It's a matter of following through on the record on this."

The pharmacy board complaint cites 39 allegations of tampering with drugs that were dispensed to 34 patients. It also cites six allegations of adulteration and misbranding of drugs and an allegation that Courtney knowingly caused false claims to be submitted to the government-run Medicare program.

The toughest action the board could take would be to revoke Courtney's license.

Courtney's plea agreement with federal prosecutors calls for him to serve between 17 1/2 and 30 years in prison.