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Health News Florida

No Break for Sick Doc, Pharmacist

Poor health is no excuse to avoid serving time, two health care professionals convicted in separate pill mill schemes have learned.

The Tampa Bay Times reports that both Dr. Ronald John Heromin, 58, of Brandon and pharmacist Steven Goodman, 70, of Treasure Island tried to use physical ailments to alleviate sentences related to their federal court convictions.

According to the Times, Heromin’s attorneys argued he suffers from “extraordinary physical impairment” as a result of multiple spinal surgeries, and needs to walk with a cane. Still, U.S. District Judge Virginia M. Hernandez Covington last week sentenced the 58-year-old Brandon doctor to 20 years in prison and ordered he pay nearly $2 million, the Times reports.

Meanwhile, Goodman, who is 70-years old and weighs 551 pounds, wanted to shorten his 2012 sentence of probation and home confinement, the Times reports. Goodman’s attorney asked that his 30-month at-home sentence be shortened, arguing he is largely confined to his bed as a result of his morbid obesity. Attorneys say he would use the freedom to make end-of-life preparations, the Times reports. U.S. District Judge Kenneth A. Marra declined the request, claiming that his already lessened sentence was done as a favor to the Bureau of Prisons who would have had to care for him, according to the Times.