FORT LAUDERDALE – One by one, prosecutors paraded witnesses into a federal courtroom this past week to build their case against a Vero Beach spine surgeon accused of illegal drug distribution and providing the fentanyl-laced pain killer that caused a Palm Beach woman’s 2016 overdose death.
Dr. Johnny Benjamin sat calmly in court, sandwiched between his lawyers, as testimony was taken on Monday, the second day of the trial. He wore glasses, a dark suit and tie. His mother watched from the pew behind him. If convicted, he faces life in prison.
The case hinges on the testimony of Kevan Slater and Zachary Stewart, two DEA informants whom prosecutors say sold prescription and counterfeit pain pills on the street for Dr. Benjamin and assisted in a scheme to build the surgeon’s inventory of illegal pills as the illicit operation spread throughout the Treasure Coast.
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