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Doctor charged in drug overdose deaths is silent in court

March 2, 2012 |  6:15 pm

A Rowland Heights doctor charged with murder in connection with three fatal prescription drug overdoses appeared in court Friday, confined to a holding cell and wearing the same clothes in which she was arrested.

Hsiu-Ying "Lisa" Tseng, 42, did not enter a plea to second-degree murder and other charges she faces. Her arraignment was postponed until March 9.

Tseng was arrested Thursday afternoon and led handcuffed from her office in a strip mall off the 60 Freeway where authorities say patients -- many of them men in their 20s -- once came to get prescriptions for drugs as potent as heroin.

Tseng is charged with murder in the deaths of Vu Nguyen, 28, of Lake Forest; Joey Rovero, 21, an Arizona State University student from San Ramon, east of Oakland; and Steven Ogle, 25, of Palm Desert.

She also faces one felony count of prescribing drugs using fraud and 20 felony counts of prescribing drugs without a legitimate purpose.

Tseng sat quietly, with her hands clasped in her lap, during her hearing before Judge Shelly Torrealba in Los Angeles County Superior Court. She is being held in lieu of $3-million bail.

The Times published articles in 2010 linking Tseng to multiple overdose deaths, including those with which she has been charged.


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Photo: Dr. Hsiu-Ying "Lisa" Tseng is escorted from her Rowland Heights clinic. Credit: Liz O. Baylen / Los Angeles Times