A former doctor at a Floyd County pain clinic has admitted conspiring to illegally distribute pain pills.
Emmanuel Galang Acosta pleaded guilty Monday in federal court. He faces up to 10 years in prison when he is sentenced in July.
Acosta's plea agreement said he prescribed tens of thousands of pills "without a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of medical practice" at a business called Paintsville Auto and Accident Healthcare.
Acosta worked at the clinic for about nine months beginning in September 2011.
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Authorities charged that the clinic was a pill mill — a cash-based business where doctors wrote prescriptions for drug abusers with little effort to provide real treatment.
At one point, Acosta was working two weeks a month, but the clinic scheduled him to see a month's worth of patients in that time.
The clinic was owned by Ray Douglas Stapleton and his wife, Tina Stapleton.
Acosta was charged in the alleged drug conspiracy with the Stapletons and another doctor, Stephen C. Arny.
The case started when Ray Stapleton arrived drunk at a traffic checkpoint in Magoffin County in October 2012. Police found more than 6,000 pills and $1.3 million in his vehicle and house, according to court records.
The Stapletons pleaded guilty and forfeited the money to the government.
A jury convicted Arny, but he is seeking a new trial.
The Stapletons and Arny face up to 20 years in prison. They are scheduled to be sentenced next week.