Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Accused Pill Mill Suspects Plead Not Guilty


Four men associated with the Wellness Clinic in Roland, and charged in Sequoyah County District Court, Sallisaw, with charges ranging from racketeering to first-degree murder, have entered not guilty pleas to the charges.

Ronald V. Myers, 60, of Belzoni, Ms., and John C. Friedl, 58, of Jenks were both charged in district court on April 15, and entered not guilty pleas on April 29. They are each accused of racketeering and two counts of unlawful distribution of controlled dangerous substances. Their next court appearance is on Associate District Judge Kyle Waters disposition docket June 22. 

They are both free on $45,000 bonds each.

George B. Howell, 79, of Wichita, Kan., is charged with racketeering and first-degree murder. The murder charge stems from the overdose death of a patient who was prescribed Schedule 2 Narcotics by Howell. If convicted, Howell could face life without parole or life in prison.

Howell entered a not guilty plea to the charges on April 27, and is free on a $45,000 bond. His next court appearance is also on Judge Waters disposition docket on June 22.

Bernard M. Tougas, 43, of Fort Smith is charged with racketeering and maintaining a building where drugs are sold. He has entered a not guilty plea and is free on a $10,000 bond. His next court appearance is scheduled for June 6 before Judge Waters.

The charges are the result of an investigation by the Oklahoma Attorney General. 

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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