DEA targets doctors to fight prescription pain medication and heroin addiction

Posted at 11:00 PM, Sep 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-21 09:20:05-04

He’s been licensed in Arizona for more than a decade, and now the DEA is using him as example in what you might call a "pill mill" crackdown.

Dr. Harinder Takyar now indicted for being the type of doctor that just hands out prescriptions. He’s facing 42 different counts accused of handing out those prescriptions like candy.

We tried to track him down. His Mesa office is still up and running, but he wasn’t there on Tuesday.

However, we did reach him by phone.

We asked him if he felt that pain medications caused heroin addictions and if he felt like he wrote too many prescriptions. But he declined to comment, only saying he is not guilty and a good doctor.

But the DEA is painting a much different picture. They are calling out doctors like him for trying to make a profit off people’s addictions.

"We are a pill popping society. We all want a magic pill that will relieve whatever ailment we have,” said Special Agent Doug Coleman, Drug Enforcement Administration.

The stats in Arizona show that's only causing the heroin problem to get worse.

The amount coming in from Mexico has tripled the last six years. The DEA says focusing on the cartels along isn’t enough. Doctors abusing their power and their prescription pads also need to be taken down.

"It disgusts me, I don’t feel bad for them. We are going to do everything we can to stop them,” Coleman said.

Dr. Takyar practicing internal medicine and has offices in Mesa and Florence.

The Medical Board is reviewing his case and will determine if he can still practice medicine.