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Former Mon City pharmacy owner pleads guilty

| Friday, Jan. 25, 2013, 12:02 a.m.

The former owner of a Monongahela pharmacy pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to criminal counts of conspiracy and conspiracy to launder money.

Jeffrey Markovitz, who previously owned Dierken's Pharmacy & Giftland at 100 E. Main Street, entered the guilty pleas in front of Judge Cathy Bissoon at the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania in Pittsburgh.

Markovitz remains free on $10,000 unsecured bond, according to his attorney, Wayne DeLuca.

DeLuca said the sentencing date for Markovitz, originally scheduled for May 29, will be changed.

The conspiracy count included smuggling “misbranded” drugs and stated that Markovitz, twice in summer of 2007, wired $27,948 to Canada to buy “illegally smuggled, unapproved and misbranded prescription drugs”, according to court documents.

The document did not state if Markovitz sold the pills through the pharmacy or if others were involved. United States Attorney David J. Hickton, who prosecuted the case, did not return a phone message Thursday afternoon.

Officials from several federal agencies, including the FBI, Internal Revenue Service and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms had investigated Markovtiz's dealings at the pharmacy.

Internal Revenue Service Special Agent Cindy Pfeifer said Thursday she could not provide any other details about the investigation.

Rick Bruni Jr. is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at rbruni@tribweb.com or 724-684-2635.

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