Florida Hospital Oceanside director arrested on drug charges

Arrest comes after 2-year DEA investigation

ORMOND BEACH, Fla. – The executive director of Florida Hospital Oceanside is accused of using fraudulent information to obtain narcotics, including the highly addictive pain killer hydrocodone, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Officials said Howard Perch used the DEA registration numbers from several Florida Hospital doctors to get the drugs. He would also visit other doctors in Central Florida and give them false or misleading information in an attempt to get the medication.

He also used personal information from family members, including his child's, officials said.

The arrest brought a two-year investigation to an end.

"The investigation and subsequent arrest of Howard Perch illustrates that the perils associated with the illegal diversion of pharmaceuticals drugs has and can infiltrate all levels of society," Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Central Florida Regional Office Jeffrey Walsh said. "We will continue to work diligently with our law enforcement partners to identify and apprehend those responsible for circumventing the legal process of acquiring of these pharmaceuticals." 

The Volusia County Sheriff's Office and the Ormond Beach Police Department assisted with the investigation.

“The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office will always work aggressively with our local, state and federal law enforcement partners to follow these narcotics investigations wherever they lead us, whether it’s a major drug supplier or a white collar executive abusing their position to illegally obtain controlled substances," Volusia Sheriff Mike Chitwood said. "Together, we will ensure that  those who resort to criminal activities are held accountable.” 

Perch is charged with obtaining controlled substances by fraud and providing false info to obtain them

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