United States District Court Judge Robert D. Mariani of the Middle District of Pennsylvania has sentenced Wyoming County dentist Christopher Bereznak of Tunkhannock to a term of imprisonment of time served, approximately eight and a half months, on unlawful drug distribution charges.
After a seven-day trial in August 2019, a federal jury found Bereznak guilty on eight counts of unlawfully distributing controlled substances outside the usual course of professional practice and without a legitimate medical purpose.
It was alleged at trial that Bereznak initiated a sexual relationship with a young woman after answering her ad posted on Craig’s List saying that she was looking for a “sugar daddy.” The relationship involved Bereznak provided prescriptions for controlled substances for the young woman in exchange for intimacy and sex.
The sexual and unlawful relationship was evidenced to the jury in part through the introduction of approximately a thousand text messages between the two.
In addition to the term of imprisonment, Mariani ordered that Bereznak be supervised by a probation officer for three years following his release from prison. Mariani also imposed a $5,000 fine. Bereznak’s license to practice dentistry in Pennsylvania has been suspended, and his Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) registration has been revoked.
The charges stem from an investigation initiated by Drug Diversion Agents located in Scranton, the DEA Scranton office, the Olyphant Police Department, and the Lackawanna County District Attorney’s Office. Assistant United States Attorneys Michelle Olshefski and Francis P. Sempa prosecuted the case.