13 March 2010

Corey Haim's death linked to prescription-drug ring

California Attorney General Jerry Brown has said that actor Corey Haim’s death is linked to "illegal and massive prescription-drug ring."

Brown's office is investigating "an unauthorized prescription under the former child star's name that was found during an ongoing investigation of fraudulent prescription-drug pads ordered from a vendor in San Diego."

This announcement comes before the LA coroner has ruled on what exactly killed the 38 year-old actor early in the morning hours of March 10.

"Corey Haim's death is yet another tragedy linked to the growing problem of prescription-drug abuse," Brown said. "This problem is increasingly linked to criminal organizations, like the illegal and massive prescription-drug ring under investigation."

Brown told reporters that this ring uses stolen doctor’s identities to order prescription-drug pads to write counterfeit prescriptions. "The doctor whose name is printed on the form is usually unaware that his or her identity has been stolen for this purpose," Brown said. The AG’s announcement did not specify whether any of the prescription drugs found in Haim's apartment after his death were illegally obtained.

Only 11 days before his death, Haim had gotten a prescription filled for the two powerful drugs -most likely Oxycontin, though Brown only linked the drug to the investigation. His primary-care doctor did not know about the prescriptions and called the pharmacy two days later to find out what Haim had been given, a source told CNN.

Los Angeles County Deputy Coroner Ed Winter did say, however, several prescription-drug bottles were taken from Haim's apartment, indicating they were for Vicodin, Valium and Soma, although no tests have concluded if that was what they were.

It’s been reported that early autopsy shows Haim's heart was enlarged and he had fluid in his lungs. The coroner's chief investigator said a drug overdose has not been ruled out as the cause of the actor's death, however. Los Angeles County Deputy Coroner Ed Winter said. “You can have somebody with an enlarged heart and some other medical conditions, but you don't know if the actual cause of death is from illegal substances, medication or heart failure."

After nearly two-decades of substance abuse, it is possible his heart just gave out. And sadly, it appears his passing comes just as the actor was reviving her career. Now he’s just another reminder of how drug abuse will eventually catch up you.

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