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Prescribing doctor charged in O.D. deaths
A Southern California doctor was ordered to stand trial for second-degree murder in the overdose deaths of three patients to whom she prescribed medications.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge M.L. Villar de Longoria said Hsiu-Ying “Lisa” Tseng, 42, “improperly used her prescription pad to cause irreparable harm,” the Los Angeles Times reported.
Tseng, who ran a medical clinic in Rowland Heights, prescribed the drugs to the three men, all in their 20s, in 2009 despite evidence “something was terribly wrong and young men were repeatedly overdosing or dying,” Villar de Longoria said.
The judge pointed to prosecution evidence showing Tseng had been notified by coroner’s investigators and law enforcement officials that her “young, vibrant patients were dying of overdoses.” Testimony indicated some of her patients’ family members also had pleaded with her to stop prescribing drugs to their loved ones, the Times said.
Tseng also is charged with 20 felony counts of prescribing drugs to people with no legitimate need for them and one count of prescribing drugs using fraud.
T. Edward Welbourn, one of Tseng’s attorneys, said she’s being held to an “impossible” standard of “having a crystal ball” that could tell her when patients were lying and was “charged with believing” what patients told her.
Tseng, who is being held on $3 million bail, was arrested March 1. She has surrendered her medical license.
Copyright 2012 by United Press International