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DEA raids clinics, pharmacies in ‘pill mill’ crackdown

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Federal agents say they have carried out raids at medical clinics and pharmacies in four Southern states as part of a crackdown intended to help people addicted to prescription drugs.

Agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration raided facilities in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi on Wednesday.

They said over the past 16 months, 280 people have been arrested under “Operation Pilluted,” including 22 doctors and pharmacists. The crackdown targeted the illegal sales of painkillers, including oxycodone and hydrocodone.

DEA Special Agent-in-Charge Keith Brown said the medical professionals arrested had forgotten their pledge to “do no harm.”

Agents in Arkansas raided a medical clinic, detaining seven, and also swept into a pharmacy.

DEA data show Arkansas, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana were among the top 11 states for prescribing hydrocodone in 2014.

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