Las Vegas Doctor, 93, Gets 10-Year Prison Term in Drug Case

(RACHEL CROSBY, LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL) A 93-year-old Las Vegas pain management practitioner was sentenced Tuesday to a decade in prison after supplying scores of drug addicts and dealers with powerful opioids for no real medical purpose and laundering his profits.


Photo by frankieleon, Creative Commons 

The doctor, Henri Wetselaar, is one of the oldest defendants ever to be sentenced in the federal criminal justice system, according to a sentencing memorandum filed last week by his attorney, Jeffrey Setness.

Senior U.S. District Judge Kent Dawson imposed the prison term and fined the doctor, a Netherlands-born World War II veteran, $2.5 million.

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Wetselaar’s age and poor medical condition were the main reasons the defense gave for requesting five years of home confinement. The doctor suffers from ailments that include prostate cancer, chronic renal failure, multiple heart valve disorders and brain atrophy.

Throughout the court process, Wetselaar’s failing health caused several trial delays as he was in and out of the hospital.

Prosecutors asked for a 20-year prison sentence.

“Wetselaar’s behavior was far from that of a doctor,” prosecutors wrote in a separate sentencing memorandum filed last week. “Rather he was an individual who cared little for the health and well-being of his patients.”  READ THE FULL STORY AT LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL