Federal prosecutors say an Alton doctor operated a "pill mill." Sixty-six-year-old Viwathna Bhuthumethee faces several counts including heath care fraud and the illegal distribution of drugs including Xanax following a two year investigation. The alleged crimes occurred while he ran the Walk In Clinic at the corner of East Broadway and Ridge Street in Alton.
The clinic was the target of a local and federal law enforcement raid in 2010 at which time it was alleged that the doctor was prescribing narcotics to chemically dependent patients. At that time, the Walk In Clinic lost its DEA registration to distribute controlled substances. A federal grand jury found additional evidence against Dr. Bhuthumethee, leading to 15-count indictment that was issued on Thursday. If found guilty, the doctor faces prison time and fines, and local authorities hope the clinic will be shut down for good.