On March 15 of this year, the Medical Board of California announced that Naga Raja Thota had surrendered his medical license. That was hardly surprising, because a week earlier, he had been sentenced to 30 months in prison, according to Orlando Gutierrez, assistant United States attorney.
Thota ran the Pain Management Center in El Cajon. He was arrested August 31 of last year for distributing oxycodone and other highly addictive drugs in exchange for sex. There was no legitimate medical purpose for such prescriptions, said the Drug Enforcement Administration.
The administration initially charged that at least two young women received prescriptions for opioids without medical purpose in exchange for sex. In the days following the arrest, other women came forward with the same complaint.
One victim said she was 20 years old when she met Thota, who prescribed opioids for her. He kept increasing the dosage and claiming that the drugs would relieve pain, when she didn't have a medical condition causing chronic pain. She said that she submitted to sexual acts with the doctor because she feared he would give her no more opioid prescriptions. Eventually she started using an even stronger opioid — heroin.
On February 27, the medical board put Dr. Glenn Mark Balfour of Oceanside on probation for four years. He was charged with "gross negligence" in prescribing controlled drugs, including oxycodone, to patients excessively.