[Federal Register Volume 69, Number 190 (Friday, October 1, 2004)]
[Notices]
[Pages 58959-58961]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 04-21964]


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DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

Drug Enforcement Administration

[Docket No. 04-9]


Gabriel Sagun Orzame, M.D. Revocation of Registration

    On October 7, 2003, the Deputy Assistant Administrator, Office of 
Diversion Control, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), issued an 
Order to Show Cause to Gabriel Sagun Orzame, M.D. (Respondent) 
notifying him of an opportunity to show cause as to why DEA should not 
revoke his DEA Certificate of Registration, AO1690367, under 21 U.S.C. 
824(a)(3) and (a)(4), and deny any pending applications for renewal or 
modification of that registration. Specifically, the Order to Show 
Cause alleged in relevant part, the following:
    1. Effective November 17, 2002, the State of Michigan, Department 
of Consumer and Industry Services, Board of Medicine Disciplinary 
Subcommittee (Board), revoked the Respondent's

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medical licensure privileges in that state.
    2. This revocation of license was based upon the Respondent's 
conviction for altered records (one count of recklessly placing false 
information in the medical chart) in violation of MCL 750.492(a)(I)(b), 
a misdemeanor. Appeals of the Board's revocation order have been denied 
up through the Michigan Supreme Court.
    3. A criminal complaint from which the above charge stems is based 
upon a Michigan State Police investigation for which the Respondent was 
charged with one count of conspiracy, three counts of delivery and 
thirty-two counts of delivery of a controlled substance prescription 
form. Four undercover officers made undercover visits to the 
Respondent's office and he never performed examinations on them. 
Nevertheless, the Respondent provided prescriptions for controlled 
substances for the undercover officers and for other persons who were 
not there.
    4. As a result of the actions taken by the Board, the Respondent is 
currently without authority to handle controlled substances in the 
State of Michigan, the state in which he is registered with DEA.
    By letter dated October 24, 2003, the Respondent, through his legal 
counsel, timely requested a hearing in this matter. As part of his 
hearing request, the Respondent further asserted that he ``* * * still 
has a license to practice medicine, and is licensed by the State of New 
York to prescribe medication.'' On October 31, 2003, the presiding 
Administrative Law Judge Gail A. Randall (Judge Randall) issued to 
counsel for DEA as well as the Respondent an Order for Prehearing 
Statements.
    On November 19, 2003, counsel for DEA filed Government's Prehearing 
Statement and Motion for Summary Disposition. In its motion, the 
Government recited, among other things, an allegation outlined in the 
Order to Show Cause regarding the November 17, 2002, revocation of the 
Respondent's Michigan medical license. With regard to this allegation, 
the Government argued in relevant part that the Respondent is currently 
without authority to handle controlled substances in the State of 
Michigan. The Government further argued that the Respondent's licensure 
status in New York is of no consequence since he is not registered with 
DEA in that state. Therefore, the Government requested that the 
Administrative Law Judge grant its Motion for Summary Disposition and 
recommend that Respondent's DEA Certificate of Registration be revoked 
based on his lack of state authorization to handle controlled 
substances in Michigan.
    On December 11, 2003, the Respondent filed his Response to 
Government's Motion for Summary Disposition. In his response, the 
Respondent argued that his medical license was suspended in the State 
of Michigan because of a mistaken guilty plea to a state misdemeanor 
charge related to the prohibition on health care providers placing 
inaccurate information in a patient file. The Respondent reiterated 
that he remains licensed to practice medicine in New York, and further 
requested that the DEA proceedings be stayed for 90 days so that he can 
establish professional residency in New York.
    Following a Government response objecting to the Respondent's 
request for stay, on February 4, 2004, Judge Randall issued her Opinion 
and Recommended Decision of the Administrative Law Judge (Opinion and 
Recommended Decision). As part of her recommended ruling, Judge Randall 
granted the Government's Motion for Summary Disposition and found that 
the Respondent lacked authorization to handle controlled substances in 
Michigan, the jurisdiction in which he is registered with DEA. In 
granting the Government's motion, Judge Randall also recommended that 
the Respondent's DEA registration be revoked and any pending 
applications for modification or renewal be denied. No exceptions were 
filed by either party to Judge Randall's Opinion and Recommended 
Decision, and on March 15, 2004, the record of these proceedings was 
transmitted to the Office of the DEA Deputy Administer.
    The Deputy Administrator has considered the record in its entirety 
and pursuant to 21 CFR 1316.67, hereby issues her final order based 
upon findings of fact and conclusions of law as hereinafter set forth. 
The Deputy Administrator adopts, in full, the Opinion and Recommended 
Decision of the Administrative Law Judge.
    The Deputy Administrator finds that the Respondent currently 
possesses DEA Certificate of Registration AO1690367, and is registered 
to handle controlled substances at a location in Benton Harbor, 
Michigan. The Deputy Administrator further finds that effective 
November 17, 2002, the Board revoked Respondent's license to practice 
medicine in Michigan. While the Respondent has presented evidence of 
his medical license in New York, there is no evidence before the Deputy 
Administrator that the Respondent has applied for, or has been granted 
resinstatement of his Michigan medical license, the state where he 
holds a DEA registration. Accordingly, the Deputy Administrator also 
finds it reasonable to infer that Respondent is also without 
authorization to handle controlled substances in that state.
    DEA does not have statutory authority under the Controlled 
Substances Act to issue or maintain a registration if the applicant or 
registrant is without state authority to handle controlled substances 
in the state in which he conducts business. See 21 U.S.C. 802(21), 
823(f) and 824(a)(3). This prerequisite has been consistently upheld. 
See Kanwaljit S. Serai, M.D., 68 FR 48943 (2003); Dominick A. Ricci, 
M.D., 58 FR 51104 (1993); Bobby Watts, M.D., 53 FR 11919 (1988).
    Here, it is clear that the Respondent is not currently licensed to 
handle controlled substances in Michigan. Therefore, he is not entitled 
to maintain that registration. Because the Respondent is not entitled 
to a DEA registration in Michigan due to his lack of state 
authorization to handle controlled substances, the Deputy Administrator 
concludes that it is unnecessary to address whether his registration 
should be revoked based upon the other grounds asserted in the Order to 
Show Cause. See Cordell Clark, M.D., 68 FR 48942 (2003); Nathaniel-
Aikens-Afful, M.D., FR 16871 (1997); Sam F. Moore, D.V.M., 58 FR 14428 
(1993).
    In further support of his continued registration with DEA, 
Respondent argues that consideration should be given to his state 
licensure to practice medicine in New York. The Deputy Administrator 
agrees with Judge Randall that the Respondent's status as a 
practitioner is a state other than Michigan has no bearing on this 
matter. The Deputy Administrator also agrees with the argument 
forwarded by the Government that Respondent's assertions regarding his 
licensure status in New York are without merit ``and ultimately 
irrelevant'' since Respondent's DEA Certificate of Registration is for 
a Michigan address, and he is currently not authorized to handle 
controlled substances in that state, See, Layfe Robert Anthony, M.D., 
67 FR 35582 (2002).
    Accordingly, the Deputy Administrator of the Drug Enforcement 
Administration, pursuant to the authority vested in her by 21 U.S.C. 
823 and 824 and 28 CFR 0.100(b) and 0.104, hereby orders that DEA 
Certificate of Registration, AO1690367, issued to Gabriel Sagun Orzame, 
M.D., be, and it hereby is, revoked. The Deputy Administrator further 
orders that any

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pending applications for renewal or modification of such registration 
be, and they hereby are, denied. This order is effective November 1, 
2004.

    Dated: September 8, 2004.
Michele M. Leonhart,
Deputy Administrator.
[FR Doc. 04-21964 Filed 9-30-04; 8:45 am]
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