Federal warrants served at Tampa pain clinics
Tampa, Florida – Law enforcement is serving federal search warrants at two pain clinics and a pharmacy in Tampa.
The U.S. Attorney’s office says warrants were served at:
- 1949 WEST MLK BLVD. – MACRON MEDICAL TECHNOLOGIES
- 1947 WEST MLK. BLVD – VIP PHARMACY
- 2137 WEST MLK. BLVD. – TAMPA BAY WELLNESS CENTER
As of 6 p.m. Thursday, federal investigators were still on the scene, carrying out pieces of evidence.
The scene late Thursday morning, looked more like a line for concert tickets than a wait to get into a pain clinic.
Photo Gallery: Warrants issued at Tampa pain clinics
People who live and worked in the area along MLK, say it has looked that way every day for months.
“I’ve seen them have cookouts. I’ve seen people selling cold drinks out of the back of their car,” said neighbor Beatrice Perelta.
But on Thursday, instead of getting treatment, the crowd ended up being questioned by federal agents.
“Oh we’re ecstatic. As soon as we saw them roll up and raid the place, it was like Christmas,” said Chad Locicero, who owns a child care facility across the street from one clinic.
Officials are giving few details on the investigation, only that federal search warrants are being served in a year-long federal and Tampa police investigation.
Police say the goal today is to collect as much evidence as possible.
“They have months and months of investigating ahead of them,” said Laura McElroy from Tampa PD.
The people lined up outside one of the buildings, didn’t have much to say about what’s going on.
“(Police) didn’t say anything. ‘Get out of the building,’ that’s it,” one man told 10 Connects.
But people living in the area say for months they’ve seen hundreds of people line up from early in the morning until well after midnight, with the goal of getting their hands on more pain pills.
“You don’t see anyone with pain going in the pain clinics. Nobody has a cane, nobody has a wheelchair,” Locicero said.
Federal investigators say so far no one has been arrested in connection with the clinics. They don’t expect that to happen until after all the evidence has been collected.
However, Tampa police have arrested four people who were standing in the crowd outside the clinic. Two were picked up for drug possession and two for outstanding warrants.
Adam Freeman, 10Connects
Pulled From: wtsp.com