A Riverside County man pleaded guilty Monday to federal drug trafficking charges involving the theft of at least nine doctors’ DEA numbers and dates of birth that the defendant used to obtain oxycodone and other prescription medications that he later sold on the darknet.
Christopher Lazenby, 29, of Homeland pleaded guilty in Los Angeles federal court to a two-count criminal information charging him with possessing with intent to distribute methamphetamine and oxycodone, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson scheduled a Feb. 10 sentencing hearing for Lazenby, who faces a sentence between 10 years and life in federal prison, prosecutors said.
Lazenby perpetrated his scheme by stealing the identities of at least nine doctors and one physician’s assistant, which allowed him to use the Drug Enforcement Administration’s online registration system to change the addresses of eight doctors to mailboxes he had rented in South Los Angeles and Carson, according to his plea agreement.
Lazenby changed the address of a ninth doctor to show his medical office was a room at a Motel 6 in Inglewood, according to an affidavit filed with the criminal complaint in the case.
With official records showing new addresses for the doctors, Lazenby — who used the aliases Jamey Neher, Bryan Sheldon and Colin Bohlinger — forged the physicians’ signatures on counterfeit prescriptions and ordered oxycodone, hydrocodone and Adderall to be sent to the addresses he controlled, the plea agreement states. Lazenby admitted that after he received the narcotics, he used the dark web and Craigslist to advertise the drugs for sale.
Lazenby was arrested on Oct. 3 at his hotel room in Torrance, which he had rented using an alias, the plea agreement states. During searches of his hotel room and car, law enforcement seized narcotics, including 196 grams of methamphetamine, oxycodone pills, prescription pads in the names of the identity theft victim doctors, rubber stamps in the names of ID theft victim doctors — which Lazenby used to fraudulently sign the counterfeit prescriptions — and computer equipment, according to the plea agreement.