Suspects charge in prescription fraud, marijuana growing cases

Published 10:56 pm Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Two separate cases were worked by two separate law enforcement agencies resulting in the arrests of two suspects.

The first case was worked by the Picayune Police Department and involved a suspect using her job as a way to illegally acquire prescription medication.

Deputy Chief David Ervin said the suspect, Patricia Diez, 46, of 1309 Rock Ranch Rd., Carriere, allegedly called in a prescription to the Wal-Mart pharmacy on March 27 at about 6 p.m. using an alias. Diez, who allegedly worked for a local doctor’s office, was allegedly attempting to fill a prescription of 60 Lorcet pills.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

When the pharmacy called the doctor to verify the prescription, the doctor informed the pharmacy that he did not authorize that prescription. Investigators with the Picayune Police Department were called out to investigate. When Diez showed up the next day at about 3:30 p.m. to pick up the prescription, the investigators were waiting for her, Ervin said.

Diez was charged with fraud and acquisition of a controlled substance. Investigators are looking into past pharmacy records to see if Diez will face additional charges, Ervin said.

The Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department arrested a county resident on the charge of manufacture of marijuana. Chief Investigator Donnie Saucier said on Monday that investigators with the department went to the home of 53 year-old Walter Cundiff, 59 Lovell Johnson Rd., based on tips provided to them that alleged he was growing marijuana.

Once investigators arrived they received consent to search the residence. Inside the residence the investigators found two three-foot tall marijuana plants and a firearm. Cundiff was charged with manufacture of marijuana while in possession of a firearm, Saucier said.