Pharmacy tech pleads guilty to plot to steal insulin from Army

Thursday, March 31, 2005

WICHITA, Kan. -- The United States attorney in the district of Kansas in February nabbed the leader of a scheme that robbed the U.S. Army of a million dollars worth of insulin and other medical supplies, according to a Department of Justice press release.
Ronald Ausberry pleaded guilty in U.S District Court to two counts of conspiracy for his role in the plot.
According to the release, Ausberry began stealing insulin, insulin strips and other pharmaceuticals in December 2001 when he was a Specialist Fourth Class employed as a pharmacy technician at Fort Riley. He later recruited other Army pharmacy technicians to steal supplies from base pharmacies at Fort Know, Tenn.; Walter Reed Hospital, Washington; Fort Gordon, Ga.; and Fort Polk, La.
Ausberry sold the stolen supplies to a consumers he found via the Internet. The pharmaceuticals were shipped to buyers in Florida, Pennsylvania and other states.
Although the insulin was neither stored nor shipped in a temperature controlled environment, the United States attorney said he is not aware of any reported adverse physical effects or injuries suffered by anyone who eventually used the drugs.
By 2002, Ausberry had earned approximately $1.1 million from selling the stolen pharmaceuticals. He faces up to five years in prison and a $500,000 fine for his role in the theft.
Ausberry's wife, Sabrina Ausberry, also pleaded guilty to one count of concealing the crime. In her plea, Sabrina Ausberry admitted to knowing about the thefts. Payments to Ronald came from Arizona via wire transfers from Sabrina's accounts or checks made out to Sabrina. Four other conspirators have also pleaded guilty in the case, and five more people are awaiting trial.