BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) A pain managment doctor avoided jail time Monday after admitting that he used the prescription drugs of two deceased paitents to treat his own chronic pain.
Dr. Paul Biddle, 55, lives in Amherst but ran a pain management practice in Orchard Park. He was sentenced Monday to two years probabtion for identity theft and unlawful possession of hydromorphone. He admitted that on more than 30 occassions in 2016 and 2017, he prescribed hydromorphone from patients that had since died and had the drug sent to his own home or office. In court, his attorney, Brian Melber said Biddle has had chronic pain from his own past surgeries and only used the opioids for his personal use, not for profit and not for any other patients.
The US Attorney’s office did not take issue with the decision of Federal Judge Elizabeth Wolford, who opted not to give him jail time, even though the federal sentecing guidelines would have suggested somehwere between six to 12 months in prison.
“Frankly in allowing him to enter into that plea, we felt it was appropriate because there was no evidence that he unlawfully distributed drugs,” said James Kennedy Jr., the US Attorney for the Western District of New York. “He obviously had an addiction and I think today’s sentencing, Dr. Biddle himself recognized, shows the dangers of addiction and that no one is immune from it. So, we’re pleased with the sentence. We think it was a fair result.”