Contact Us

Seven Charged with Pushing Heroin, Crack in NJ VA Hospitals

Seven men with access to Veterans Administration hospitals in New Jersey face federal charges that they peddled heroin, crack and hydromorphone to patients.

judges gavel
(Joe Raedle, Getty Images)

Under arrest are Philip Johnson, 52, of Basking Ridge; Robin Merritt, 55, of Hackensack; Abdul Kareem Muhammad, 50, of Bound Brook; Yusef Muhammad, 59, of North Plainfield; Thomas Pearson, 66, of Dover; Christopher Shalaby, 31, of Somerville; and Jon Stuckey, 49, of Newark.

Each faces anywhere from one to three counts of distributing controlled dangerous substances. Each count carries a maximum possible sentence of 20 years in prison and fines as high as $1,000,000.

All seven are veterans with privileged access to the hospitals, say investigators with New Jersey U.S Attorney Paul Fishman’s office.The transactions took place in the East Orange and Lyons facilities. Five were arrested at the East Orange center, one at Lyons and one at home.

According to Special Agent Jeffrey Hughes of the Veterans Administration Office of Inspector General, the probe has its roots in a veteran’s overdose death in the Lyons hospital two years ago.

“Subsequently,” he said in a prepared release, “the FBI and VA OIG jointly launched an operation which focused on combating the sale of heroin and crack cocaine to patients at Lyons. VA management at Lyons, including VA Police, provided invaluable support during the course of this investigation.”

“We hope,” he concluded, that “anyone selling drugs at VA treatment facilities will realize that we will vigorously pursue them to protect veterans seeking treatment.”

Read the individual complaints

Johnson, Phillip Complaint
Merritt, Robin Complaint

Muhammad, Abdul Kareem Complaint

Muhammad, Yusuf Complaint

Pearson, Thomas Complaint

Shalaby, Christopher Complaint

Stuckey, John Complaint

Best of 92.7 WOBM

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for WOBM Listener Club quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive WOBM Listener Club contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.