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Devin Anthony Magarian of Florida allegedly hacked online prescription websites used by doctors to issue narcotic prescriptions, Nassau DA Anne Donnelly says | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #hacker | #hacking | #aihp


A Florida man who authorities said is a ringleader in a multistate conspiracy that repeatedly hacked an online prescription website used by doctors and issued tens of thousands of prescriptions for narcotics, has been arrested and charged in Nassau County, prosecutors said Friday.

Devin Anthony Magarian, 21, of Kissimmee, Florida, who allegedly created the fraudulent prescriptions for oxycodone, and promethazine and codeine, was arrested by Nassau County police on Jan. 17 in New York City, Nassau District Attorney Anne Donnelly said.

The alleged scheme grossed between $75,000 and $200,000 a month, allowing Magarian and his associates to live “an extravagant lifestyle,” which included steakhouses, strip clubs, luxury car rentals and tickets to NBA finals games,” Donnelly said. The scheme included mom-and-pop pharmacies as well as national chains in New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Florida, Texas, Georgia and the Carolinas, Donnelly said.

“In the past, it was common for a criminal to steal a doctor’s prescription pad and use it to fill illegal prescriptions,” said Donnelly at a news conference Friday. “Well, this defendant and his associates allegedly took that template and updated for it 2024 in a grand way.”

Donnelly said the federal government needs to create stop gaps in the e-prescribing system that would work to counteract this kind of fraud.

Magarian was arrested when he was in New York to pick up about $14,000 in compensation for 630 Oxycodone pills that were 30 mg each, prosecutors said. Donnelly said the weight of these drugs allowed prosecutors to charge Magarian with the top charge.

“My client is 21 years old, has no criminal record,” said Rankin. “I think this is a rush to judgment by the government and I think that when all the facts are developed, I think my client will be exonerated.”

The investigation began in February 2023 when an unnamed defendant, a 22-year-old man, was arrested outside of a Great Neck pharmacy after picking up two prescriptions that were not in his name, but instead for someone born in 1966. The unnamed defendant was in contact with Magarian, Donnelly said.

“The pharmacist was extremely helpful,” said Donnelly. “He called law enforcement and alerted us.”

Investigators first looked to see if there was a “dirty doctor” at play, Donnelly said, but “nothing was making sense.” Local investigators then learned the doctor had reported “unusual activity on his cell phone and prescribing license to the DEA,” she said.

Magarian pleaded not guilty at his Jan. 17 arraignment in Nassau County District Court on multiple charges including first-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance, two counts of third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance, second-degree criminal diversion of prescription medication and prescriptions and 15 counts of fourth-degree criminal diversion of prescription medication and prescriptions.

Nassau District Court Judge Arieh Schulman ordered Magarian held without bail.

Nassau District Attorney Anne Donnelly, middle, announces the arrest of Devin Anthony Magarian, in Mineola on Friday. Credit: Howard Schnapp

According to prosecutors, the scheme worked like this: Magarian would compromise the cell phones of doctors around the country – a new doctor every four weeks, allowing him to access the doctor’s e-prescription credentials.

“How he was able to do this, we are still investigating,” said Donnelly.

Magarian’s alleged associates, called “runners,” picked up prescriptions that were typically issued in fictitious names at pharmacies in multiple states, prosecutors said. Magarian, according to prosecutors, allegedly operated a channel on the Telegram mobile app that served as an advertisement board for the operation.

Magarian allegedly tipped off his customers to when he could get a round of prescriptions, using a doctor’s e-prescribing privileges, prosecutors said.

The customers then allegedly messaged Magarian to purchase the prescriptions or the actual pills directly, prosecutors said.

DEA Special Agent-in-Charge of the New York division Frank Tarentino, who assisted in the investigation, called the case “modern day piracy.”

“Law enforcement acted swiftly to fully identify this elaborate criminal conspiracy operating through online illicit drug sales and interstate trafficking to shut it down,” Tarentino said.

Donnelly said the investigation is ongoing.

“I anticipate more arrests,” she said.

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