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3 men arrested in $11 million drug scheme

Authorities: Men purchased medications from Medicaid recipients in Miami, Newark, NJ

From left: Douglas Carmenate, Derek Enriquez
From left: Douglas Carmenate, Derek Enriquez

MIAMI – Three men have been arrested for their involvement in  a multi-state drug diversion ring, the State Attorney's Office said.

Those arrested include Douglas Carmenate, 34, of Miami; Derek Enriquez, 43, of Miami; and Jason Valdes, 44, of San Juan, Puerto Rico.

According to federal prosecutors, the men sold about $11 million worth of medications on the black market that they had acquired primarily from Medicaid recipients in Miami and Newark, New Jersey.

Authorities said the drugs were resold to pharmacies in the northeast. The drugs included anti-depressants, anti-psychotics and HIV medications.

"This was a complex drug diversion scheme, spanning multiple states and involving millions of dollars, but thanks to great partnerships with state and federal agencies we have stopped this massive drug trafficking operation that exploited our Medicaid program," said Attorney General Pam Bondi.

"The coordination of resources and manpower it takes to bring cases like these to prosecution is extraordinary," said FDLE Commissioner Richard Swearingen. "The Medicaid program is designed to help those in need, not be exploited. My appreciation to our state and federal partners for their hard work on stopping this criminal organization."

All three men are charged with trafficking in contraband prescription drugs, conspiracy to traffic contraband prescription drugs, two counts of Medicaid fraud, organized scheme to defraud and four counts of money laundering.

They face up to 15 years in prison, if convicted on the conspiracy charge, and up to 30 years in prison for the remaining charges.

Carmenate and Enriquez are being held in federal prison on $900,000 bond, while Valdes is being held on $1.8 million bond.

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