After a year of investigation Crystal River pain clinic closed - WFLA News Channel 8

After a year of investigation Crystal River pain clinic shuts down

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Photo provided by Citrus Co. Sheriff's Office shows arrest being made outside clinic. Photo provided by Citrus Co. Sheriff's Office shows arrest being made outside clinic.

People in nearby offices clapped and cheered as they watched the Citrus County Sheriff's Office detectives enter a pain clinic in Crystal River Thursday to close it, the detectives told us.

Citrus County Sheriff Jeff Dawsy said this was the largest operation to be shut down in Citrus County.

"This is part of our intelligence led policing efforts," he said.  "We are hitting the prescription drug market hard.  We will not tolerate this activity in our county."

Detective John Bergen led the investigative efforts in this case. The investigation revealed that the clinic, which was open in 2012 by Dr. Daniel McIntyre and Dr. Dennis Varel, dispensed 1.5 million narcotic pills like oxycodone, Xanax, Soma, Methadone, Oxycontin, with a street value of over $12 million. 

According to the police report, Dr. Dennis Varel died in January 2012 from an apparent overdose. Dr. McIntyre had prior felony charges and couldn't work at a clinic legally, which didn't stop him from writing over 170 prescriptions in 5 hours, the detectives found out.

"This man will no longer be selling these drugs to anyone inside or outside of our county," said Det. Bergen.   

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation, State Attorney's Office, Hernando County Sheriff's Office and the Pinellas County Pill Diversion Task Force joined efforts in the investigation.

Dr. McIntyre is charged with two counts of trafficking in oxycodone.

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