Leah Messer’s former doctor has been found guilty of distributing prescription drugs to an undercover DEA agent, following a trial at which the longtime Teen Mom 2 star testified.
Leah has been open about her past struggles with addiction to pain medication, specifically opioids.
The 29-year-old mom of three was prescribed opioids for pain from a botched spinal tap after the birth of her third daughter, Adalynn, in 2013.
Leah became addicted to the pain medication, and her life spiraled out of control. Eventually, she received treatment and got herself sober.
Earlier this year, Leah admitted in an interview that going to rehab was the “best thing that could’ve ever happened” to her. Teen Mom 2 fans gushed over her “glow up” and how much healthier she appears now, compared to when she was addicted to painkillers.
Leah Messer’s former doctor facing jail time
Now, court documents obtained by The Sun show that a doctor who prescribed pain meds to Leah (between 2015 and 2019), Dr. Sriramloo Kesari, faced charges in West Virginia of “routinely prescribing various Schedule III controlled substances, including Buprenorphine Hcl and Suboxone for his patients outside the usual course of professional practice and without legitimate medical purpose.”
Buprenorphine and Suboxone are administered to patients who are recovering from narcotic dependence. They are also often sold on the street because of their ability to keep addicts out of withdrawal until they can find their next fix.
Dr. Kesari was charged with “one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances along with 12 counts of unlawful distribution of controlled substances.
Prosecutors claimed that “Defendant Sriramloo Kesari did knowingly, intentionally, and without authority, distribute a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of Buprenorphine Hcl and Suboxone without a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of professional practice from 2018 to 2019.”
The Department of Justice said in a statement, “Kesari, who was at times physically located in California, operated a cash-only operation whereby he would sign prescriptions that his employee would distribute in exchange for cash payments.
“Although Suboxone is approved as a drug for treating opioid addiction, Kesari provided no meaningful addiction treatment and instead, prescribed Suboxone to an undercover DEA agent who was demonstrating clear signs that the Suboxone was being diverted or sold on the street.”
At the time of his arraignment, Dr. Kesari plead not guilty. After a jury trial in May 2021, at which Leah testified, Dr. Kesari was found guilty of one unlawful distribution of controlled substances charge, but was found not guilty of all the other charges.
The doctor requested an acquittal or new trial
An August 25 sentencing is scheduled and Dr. Kesari is facing up to 20 years in prison. He has since filed a motion for an acquittal or new trial, according to court records.
The records state, “The jury’s guilty verdict on Count 13 ignores the abundant evidence that Dr. Kesari acted in good faith when treating the UCA, and is inconsistent with the government’s failure to meet its burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Dr. Kesari acted in other than objective good faith in prescribing Suboxone to the UCA.”
A response from the prosecutor was a demand that the court “deny Kesari’s motion for judgement of acquittal or a new trial.”
The Teen Mom 2 star testified against her former doctor
Leah’s past addiction came up on last week’s Teen Mom 2 reunion when she was interviewed by host Dr. Drew. She revealed that her time on the reunion taping was cut short because she was actually testifying against Dr. Kesari.
Dr. Drew brought up that Leah has been very open about her experience with opioid addiction. He also had her explain why she was late arriving to tape the reunion episode and why she was leaving directly afterwards.
“I was subpoenaed to testify in a case against the doctor that was involved in over-prescribing medication which is exactly what led me to becoming dependent on the medication that I was prescribed,” Leah said during her reunion segment.
Teen Mom 2 is currently on hiatus.