Three convicted, two acquitted in Eastern Kentucky drug case

Illustration by Rick Nease
Illustration by Rick Nease MCT

Jurors convicted three people accused of being part of a conspiracy to distribute hundreds of thousands of pain pills in Eastern Kentucky. Two other defendants were acquitted in the trial in U.S. District Court in the Eastern Kentucky division.

All five had worked at a clinic in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., where hundreds of people from Kentucky went to get prescriptions for pills to sell or abuse between 2008 and 2014, when authorities shut down the office.

The owner of the clinic, Joel Shumrak, admitted that it operated as a pill mill. He pleaded guilty and is serving 14 years, but several former employees denied wrongdoing and went to trial.

On Wednesday, jurors convicted Lucille Frial-Carrasco, who was the clinic medical director; physician assistant Patricia A. Solomon; and Carroll Lloyd Elliott, a security guard.

Jurors returned not-guilty verdicts for Enrique A. Gonzalez-Pujol, a doctor; and Catherine Nicole Russell, who worked briefly as a physician assistant at the center.