Stolen scripts used

A Thurgoona man has used a GP’s discarded prescription pad to fraudulently obtain a powerful pain relief medication on four occasions.

Duane Lancaster found the pad while working for a Border document shredding company between mid-2013 and early 2015.

But instead of destroying the pad, Albury Local Court has heard, he took it home. Each time Duane Lancaster went to the Chemist Warehouse outlet in Springdale Heights, starting from December 27, he used a prescription he filled in to get 30 Oxycontin tablets.

But his deception unraveled when he switched his drug of choice. The 50-year-old wrote a prescription for 50 5 milligram tablets of Diazepam, which is used to treat anxiety, alcohol withdrawal and muscle spasms, and went into the pharmacy on February 14.

A staff member became suspicious, took the script and Lancaster’s Medicare card and contacted the doctor in whose name the pad was held.

This confirmed the doctor no longer used handwritten prescriptions and also now worked elsewhere.

Further checks revealed Lancaster himself had never been a patient of the practice.

As the doctor was being contacted, Lancaster fled the pharmacy before a staff member could speak to him.

Lancaster was interviewed by police three days later, when he made “full admissions” to what he had done.

Lancaster has since pleaded guilty to five counts of utter prescription that includes prohibited drug, steal property as a clerk or servant and utter a forged or altered prescription.

He will be sentenced on October 24.

Meanwhile, an Albury woman who made a series of hoax Triple-0 emergency calls has been placed on several 12-month good behaviour bonds.

Cheryl Scarcella, 43, previously had pleaded guilty to charges of false report resulting in police investigation, make vexatious call to emergency service number and two counts of make false call to emergency service number. In one call, a drunk Scarcella said someone was going to kill her with a knife.