Doctor changes plea

  • Clif Arrington MD. (Laura Ruminski/West Hawaii Today)

KAILUA-KONA — A Hawaii Island doctor accused of prescription fraud changed his plea to guilty to some of the various charges he was indicted on last year.

Originally pleading not guilty to 14 drug-related charges in September 2017, Clifton Arrington pleaded guilty to seven of the charges last week.

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On March 22, Arrington pleaded guilty to prohibited acts, a class B misdemeanor; three counts of second-degree promotion of a dangerous drug and three counts of second-degree promotion of a harmful drug.

Sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 23. At that time, the prosecutor will move to dismiss the remaining charges.

Arrington was indicted by a grand jury in August 2017. The indictment stems from an investigation that began in March 2016.

Court documents indicate that from January to March 2016, the doctor did “intentionally, knowingly or recklessly predate or pre-sign prescriptions to facilitate the obtaining or attempted obtaining of a controlled substance.”

The Ocean View man was first arrested at his North Kona office in Honalo Business Center by the state Narcotics Enforcement Division on March 17, 2016, while patients were awaiting appointments. At the time, Arrington was released pending the investigation.

After the indictment was filed in the 3rd Circuit Court on Aug. 8, 2017, Arrington turned himself in a few days later and was released on supervised release, according to court documents.

Arrington, who specializes in anti-aging medicine, was licensed and registered by the Department of Public Safety as a person who is able to distribute, dispense or conduct research with respect to a controlled substance.

Since his arrest last year, Arrington has maintained his medical practice and his license was up for renewal on Jan. 31, 2018. It appears to have been renewed.

According to the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Arrington’s business license is current. His medical license is current, valid and in good standing. His license expires Jan. 31, 2020.

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According to the Department of Public Safety website, Arrington’s license to dispense narcotics and medical marijuana is still active. It expires June 30.

Toni Schwartz, spokeswoman with the Department of Public Safety that oversees the Narcotics Enforcement Division, said she could not comment on a pending investigation.

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