Tampa, Florida – U.S. District Judge Steven Merryday has sentenced Tom Wynne (65, Pinellas Park) to 33 months in federal prison, followed by 36 months of supervised release, for one count of conspiracy to commit tax evasion, one count of tax evasion, and seven counts of money laundering. The court also ordered Wynne to forfeit two real properties, which are traceable to proceeds of the offense. In addition, he was ordered to repay the Internal Revenue Service $359,209, and pay a fine of $150,000.
Wynne had pleaded guilty on February 4, 2020.
According to court documents, Wynne owned and operated Pain and Wellness Clinic (“PWC”), a pain management clinic in Pinellas County. He hired medical doctors to prescribe for patients large quantities of Schedule II controlled substances, like oxycodone and hydromorphone, outside the usual course of professional practice. Wynne used the illegal proceeds generated from PWC to purchase real property in the Tampa Bay area.
For each tax year, beginning in 2014 and continuing through tax year 2017, Wynne underreported PWC’s gross receipts on his tax filings. He also conspired and agreed with PWC physicians to defraud the IRS by creating and preparing, among other false and fraudulent tax-related documents, false and fraudulent IRS Forms 1099 to pay the clinic’s two doctors.
“Abuse of prescription painkillers is truly a modern-day plague on society, and any health care provider who would support that activity violates their oath to do no harm,” stated Special in Charge Brian Payne of Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation. “Moreover, most of us were taught at a young age that lying makes whatever wrong we did even worse. As if procuring and distributing prescription painkillers were not bad enough, Mr. Wynne brazenly took his crimes a step further when he tried to cover up his ill-gotten gains by lying on his taxes.”
This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration—Tampa District Office, the Internal Revenue Service—Criminal Investigation, and the Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit. The Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit was created by the Department of Justice to help combat the devastating opioid crisis. The Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit focuses specifically on opioid-related health care fraud, using data to identify and prosecute individuals contributing to the prescription opioid epidemic. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Greg Pizzo and Kelley Howard-Allen. The forfeiture was handled by Assistant United States Attorney Suzanne Nebesky.