(StraightNews.org) – Police have arrested a man in Massachusetts for allegedly running an illegal dental practice from the back of a convenience store only yards from a police station. Juan Hermida Munoz, 64, was charged with one count of unauthorized practice of dentistry and one count of unauthorized practice of medicine. The convenience store’s owner, Maria Magdelena Guaman-Castro, was also arrested and charged with conspiracy.
Milford Police Department issued a press release saying they conducted a joint investigation with colleagues from the Milford Detective Bureau and Milford Patrol Division, as well as the Board of Health, into “an elaborate illegal dental operation” located at the Alternativa Convenience Store on Main Street.
The town is around 30 miles west of Boston.
Mr. Munoz has no US-recognized medical or dental qualifications but provided teeth extraction, examination, and cleaning services. “This practice puts the lives of patients in danger by unsanctioned and unsanitary conditions in receiving medical treatments,” the police said.
Dentistry-related crimes pop up quite often in America, ranging from fraud to deliberately damaging patients’ teeth. For example, in Georgia in 2019, Krista Szewczyk was charged with 48 counts for carrying out procedures and forging prescriptions. She left an abscess in one patient’s mouth that required life-saving surgery.
In 2021, police in Tulsa, Oklahoma, arrested Mansoor Magbool Bhatti for practicing without a license. The Oklahoma Board of Dentistry was tipped off by a patient when her insurance company informed her there was no record of Bhatti in the state’s dental registry. He had, however, enrolled in dental school at the University of Tennessee but attended for only three days.
In a bizarre tale, in Wisconsin, a year later, a dentist was found guilty of intentionally damaging his patients’ teeth to boost profits. Prosecutors said he drilled teeth until they broke and then charged patients to fix them, driving his earnings up by more than a million dollars in a year. He was convicted on charges of health fraud and jailed.
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