Yande to Face Lengthy Drug Trial in January

CLEARFIELD – A local doctor who is facing drug distribution charges is scheduled for a lengthy trial in January in Clearfield County Court.

Rajendra D. Yande, 48, DuBois, is charged with 11 counts of violation of the controlled substance, drug, device and cosmetic act and four counts of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity and provider prohibited acts. Yande was allegedly selling prescriptions at an osteopathic practice he operated out of his Maple Avenue home.

His trial is scheduled to start Jan. 14 and to run through Feb. 1. The case will be presented before Senior Judge David E. Grine of Centre County and be prosecuted by Senior Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Baxter.

According to a press release from the attorney general’s office, agents began an undercover investigation into Yande’s prescription practices in March 2009. Agents made a series of undercover purchases and bought 50 prescriptions for more than 2,180 prescription narcotic pills.  He allegedly wrote prescriptions for percocet, vyvanse, adderal, hydrocodone, halcion, valium and xanax and often times provided his patients with prescriptions for multiple narcotics at a time.

According to the grand jury testimony, Yande saw his patients in his living room, exercise room or kitchen of his home and did not use an exam table or a scale. Agents said that there was a blood pressure cuff and a stethoscope in the home, but neither was used during the undercover visits. He did not accept any insurance for his pain management patients and had a sign posted in his waiting room area that had a price list based on the number of narcotic medications prescribed. 

Patients who saw Yande allegedly received multiple prescriptions for narcotic pain killers as long as they paid him in cash. The cost of each visit ranged between $70 and $250 and he required that they return every two weeks.

Agents executed three search warrants of patient files and determined that a large number of Yande’s patients were on Medical Assistance.

During the Dec. 4 session of motions court, Yande’s attorney filed a motion to lower his bail. This was denied by Clearfield County President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman. Yande’s bail remains at $200,000, which was posted using his home and a former patient’s home as collateral. Yande’s home is now in foreclosure. Ammerman did note that if a bail bondsman comes into court asking about this, he would reconsider the motion.

The commonwealth also filed a motion in this case for reciprocal discovery. This was granted. The defense has until Jan. 3 to provide information on any expert witnesses who are scheduled to testify during the trial.



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