Drug Policy

DEA Blocks Walgreen in Florida from Shipping Oxycodone

If there's a chance bad people might get it, they'll keep it out of good people's hands, too


Walgreen Co. (WAG) was blocked from shipping controlled substances from a distribution center in Jupiter, Florida, after a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration probe into the sales of painkiller oxycodone found the facility posed a threat to public safety.

The Walgreen center was served today by the DEA with an immediate suspension order that bars it from handling controlled substances including oxycodone and hydrocodone, pending administrative proceedings by the agency, according to an agency statement. The Jupiter facility, one of a dozen owned and operated by Walgreen, has been the single largest distributor of oxycodone products in Florida since 2009, the DEA said.

"The diversion of pharmaceutical controlled substances is a great concern for the DEA," Mark Trouville, DEA special agent in charge of the Miami field division, said in a statement. "All DEA registrants have an obligation to ensure that medications are getting into the hands of legitimate patients, and when they choose to look the other way patients suffer and drug dealers prosper."