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Doctor's patients sold medications she prescribed, with deadly results, authorities allege

October 17, 2010 |  2:42 pm

At center of prescription drug probe

Dr. Lisa Tseng was nowhere near the Taco Bell parking lot in Laguna Niguel where a drug dealer handed 19-year-old Zack Jones a pill that would later kill him.

Nor was she in the Irvine home where Grant Pieson injected himself with a lethal cocktail of drugs.

Yet authorities are investigating whether the Rowland Heights doctor indirectly played a role in both men's deaths, according to law-enforcement records and interviews.

The alleged dealers suspected of providing drugs to Jones and Pieson were among an undetermined number of Tseng patients who authorities believe sold medications she prescribed — extending her reach beyond her patient base and complicating the task of determining how many deaths and overdoses might be linked to her practice.

Tseng is under investigation by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the state Board of Osteopathic Medicine for allegedly prescribing potent painkillers to patients who had no legitimate medical need. Since 2007, at least eight of her patients have died from overdoses of the same type of drugs she prescribed to them, according to coroner's files and interviews.

Tseng, 40, has said she has done nothing wrong and should not be held accountable for patients who do not following dosing instructions.

Read more: "Rowland Heights doctor's pills found their way into many hands."

-- Scott Glover and Lisa Girion

Photo: Dr. Lisa Tseng, 40, a Rowland Heights osteopath, shown on Aug. 25, 2010. Tseng is under investigation for allegedly prescribing potent painkillers to patients who had no legitimate medical need. Credit: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times

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