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Dr. Constantino Perales has bonded out of federal custody by posting $10,000 cash and will await trial at his Peru home.
A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois said Friday that Perales was released under an agreed order that includes home detention with electronic monitoring. Perales also may not stray beyond the Northern District region except for neighboring Bureau County.
Perales, 62, of Peru entered a not-guilty plea during arraignment Friday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sidney I. Schenkier. He will next appear for a status hearing Dec. 31 in Chicago.
A few additional details about Perales’ drug case emerged in the 17-page indictment released Friday.
According to the indictment, the feds began tracking Dr. Constantino Perales as far back as April 2012. Over that time, he allegedly dispensed medically unnecessary prescription drugs 17 times to three different patients, government documents show. Federal prosecutors also disclosed Friday a new drug not previously mentioned in the Peru physician’s criminal case to date: suboxone, a drug used to wean addicts off narcotics.
In all, Perales faces charges alleging 17 drug deliveries — five of them in August 2012 alone — during which he allegedly gave patients Xanax, Oxycontin and suboxone in Peru “and elsewhere” to persons identified only as “Patients A, B and C.” The indictment also made no mention of sex-for-drugs exchanges, as alleged in other government records.
Each count carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine. As previously reported, Perales’ state medical license was suspended, and he surrendered his Drug Enforcement Agency registration, after federal and local authorities executed a search warrant at his office and arrested him on state charges in August. Details were slow to emerge, but the state agency that regulates doctors alleges that Perales exchanged prescription drugs for cash and/or sex.
Friday’s hearing and agreed order concluded an eventful day for Perales, who had been held in La Salle County Jail in lieu of $1 million bond.
First, the U.S. Marshal’s Service picked him up early from La Salle County Jail and transported him to U.S. District Court in Chicago. Later that morning, La Salle County prosecutors dismissed his two state felony counts in an anticlimactic hearing before Judge Cynthia M. Raccuglia.
The transfer and dismissal were by no means unexpected. La Salle County state’s attorney Brian Towne said at the outset of the case that federal authorities were investigating and that federal charges would supersede anything in La Salle County Circuit Court.