Judge Orders Kahns Detained; Hearing Set For Next Week
A federal judge on Thursday ordered a Casper doctor and his wife charged with prescription drug conspiracy to be held in custody until they have attorneys to represent them at a revocation hearing next week.
U.S. District Court Judge Skavdahl ordered the detention of Dr. Shakeel Kahn and his wife, Lyn, after they made their initial appearances to hear accusations they violated a term of their release by contacting patients.
Skavdahl issued warrants for their arrest Wednesday, and they were booked into the Natrona County jail later that day.
The Kahns were released from custody several days after their arrest on Nov. 30 for one count each of conspiracy to distribute the painkiller oxycodone. If convicted, they each face up to 20 years imprisonment. However, the federal grand jury meeting this month may hand down indictments with other charges against them.
On Dec. 2, Skavdahl set them free after a detention hearing, but imposed a number of restrictions including not having any contact with any potential witnesses including patients.
Shakeel Kahn told the judge he would follow the restrictions adding, "I’ve had enough detention for a lifetime, your honor.”
But their federal probation officer reported they violated the “no contact” requirement several times, and petitioned the court arrest them and require them to show why they should not be released again.
The petitions filed in federal court Wednesday say they contacted patients in Arizona, Washington and Oregon.
Lyn Kahn told a patient in Arizona that her cell phone was tapped and the patient should call her at her home phone.
Shakeel Kahn told a patient in Washington that he wasn't in trouble and everything would be okay.
Shakeel Kahn contacted a patient in Oregon and asked him to come to Casper to sign a receipt stating a $3,000 payment "was for medical reasons."
After Skavdahl read the information in the petitions, the Kahns said they understood them.
The judge told them not to comment on what the petitions said, because that would be discussed at an evidentiary hearing next Thursday.
Skavdahl also told them they needed to be detained because there was no guarantee that they would not flee or not pose a danger to the community.
The Kahns said they needed the court to appoint attorneys for them because they have no means to hire their own, and Skavdahl ordered the court to provide public defenders for them.
However, Shakeel Kahn asked if he could be released temporarily to meet with the public defender, and Skavdahl retorted sharply, "No," saying his attorney would meet with him at the jail.
Kahn also said he faces a number of civil lawsuits that need his attention, and Skavdahl again said that was a matter he needed to discuss with his public defender.
Finally, Kahn said some of what may be discussed in court may involve patient information and he didn't want the media or the public to hear that.
Skavdahl said Kahn would be able to review that before the evidentiary hearing next week.