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Published: Friday, 1/11/2013

Doctor facing drug charges also indicted in firearms case

BY ERICA BLAKE
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Dr. Barry DeRan Dr. Barry DeRan
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A Maumee cardiologist who faces state charges of illegally distributing prescription pain medicine was indicted in federal court Thursday on gun and conspiracy charges.

Barry P. DeRan, 54, was indicted in U.S. District Court in Toledo on charges of conspiracy, making false statements in the acquisition of firearms, and unlawfully dealing in firearms. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, he is accused of “conspiring with others to obtain firearms from Internet firearms dealers” by falsely identifying “the actual buyer of the firearms when completing the required firearm transfer records.”

Dr. DeRan’s attorney, Rick Kerger, disputed the allegations, saying that there “is a great deal behind this that is not disclosed in the indictment.”

Mr. Kerger claimed the doctor was trying to set up a business dealing in firearms as a potential second career. At the time of a search of his home in March, Dr. DeRan had formed a corporation, filed for a federal firearms license, and located a place for the business, Mr. Kerger said.

He added that all the purchases were made through a licensed federal firearms dealer and were made in the doctor’s name.

“He thought this was an acceptable way for him to build up a stockpile of weapons — all the guns purchased were found when the [U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives] searched,” he said. “If he had wanted to hide what he was doing, he simply could have had his business partner buy the weapons, but he thought his approach was lawful.”

The indictment contends Dr. DeRan concealed his identity as the actual buyer of the firearms because he was prohibited under a civil protection order from Lucas County Common Pleas Court from “possessing, using, carrying, or obtaining any deadly weapons.”

The indictment also alleges Dr. DeRan bought 11 firearms from an Arizona-based dealer between August, 2010, and May, 2011, and had them shipped to a licensed Ohio firearms dealer where they were then transferred to another person “falsely identified as the actual buyer.”

“The laws are very clear about who is forbidden from carrying firearms, and this defendant fell into that category,” Steven Dettelbach, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, said in a statement. “We will aggressively pursue those who would violate our nation’s firearms laws.”

The charges are the second set of charges filed against the doctor. He is charged in Lucas County Common Pleas Court with 15 counts each of aggravated possession of drugs and aggravated trafficking in drugs, each a second-degree felony punishable by up to eight years.

Authorities said Dr. DeRan is alleged to have improperly prescribed pain medication to either people he knows or those referred to him. A March 25 trial date has been scheduled. Mr. Kerger said there is no connection between the recent federal charges and the pending drug charges.

“We believe the federal case will be resolved in his favor and are working to resolve the state case as well,” he said. “At the end, we believe Dr. DeRan will be able to continue serving his cardiology patients as he has for years.”

Contact Erica Blake at: eblake@theblade.com or 419-213-2134.



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