Peters drug treatment doctor must pay hefty income tax restitution and serve detention
A Peters psychiatrist who pleaded guilty in federal court in Pittsburgh to filing false income tax returns learned Monday he will serve time in a halfway house and home detention as well as pay more than $300,000 in restitution.
U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Schwab ordered Dr. Allan W. Clark, 58, to serve six months at Renewal Inc. in Downtown Pittsburgh and six months detention at his Washington County home, according to a U.S. Attorney’s Office statement. He must use an electronic monitor and pay for it. He will be allowed to work, go to a doctor and other places specified in a court order.
The restitution is for taxes the doctor didn’t pay for his drug treatment practice, according to a U.S. Attorney’s Office statement.
Clark served as a physician in the Air Force. After his honorable discharge, he started a child and adolescent psychiatry and addiction psychiatry practice in 2008.
He opened the cash-only Suboxone clinic, South Hills Recovery Project, on Boyce Road in Bridgeville. Within two years, he was treating hundreds of patients, the government said. Suboxone is used there to help people addicted to heroin or other opiates.
According to prosecutors, between 2011 and 2013 Clark hired about 11 doctors to work part time at his clinic to assist him in handling patient follow up visits. In 2013, they were treating 600 to 700 new patients a month and at least 100 follow-up visits, court records show.
Of the $150 collected from patients for each follow-up visit, the 11 doctors were paid approximately half, or $75, and the clinic kept the other $75. According to the statement, Clark did not report all of the cash collected, and he instead used some of it for personal expenses such as home improvements.
According to court papers, Clark was overwhelmed by the number of patients and that he “neglected to give the required attention due the business side of his practice and he wrongfully filed false tax returns.”
The government said Clark is remorseful and that he has capable employees running the clinic, which remains open.
He pledged to hire tax experts to do his tax returns.
The government also said Clark is not a threat to the community and doesn’t have prior contact with the criminal justice system. His age, coupled with his thriving business, means there is slight chance of him repeating the crime. “His recidivism risk is very low” and any long prison sentence would disrupt the clinic and its patients and threaten his ability to retain his medical license, the papers said.
Schwab ordered Clark to pay about $392,000 in restitution and $15,000 fine as well as serve 5 years of probation after his detention ends.
Chuck Biedka is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chuck at 724-226-4711, [email protected] or via Twitter .