A Polk County case involving illegal steroids resulted Tuesday morning in the arrest of a Virginia chiropractor, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office reported.
Undercover detectives assigned to the Polk County Sheriff’s Tactical Drug Unit and officers with the U.S. Marshal’s Office arrested Dr. Douglas Owen Nagel, 50, of 12025 Edgemere Circle, Reston, Va., on a Polk County arrest warrant.
Nagel was charged with seven counts of solicitation to deliver a controlled substance and one count of conspiracy to deliver a controlled substance after a investigation of a Lakeland man led to Nagel as an alleged buyer of steroids.
Nagel, who operates two chiropractic offices in the Virginia/Washington, D.C. area, is accused of having purchased anabolic steroids for at least a year from Richard “Andy” Thomas of Lakeland, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
The office of the State Attorney Jerry Hill in Polk County is prosecuting the case.
According to a Sheriff’s Office report, Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents in Philadelphia intercepted on May 21, 2009, a package containing illicit steroids, including nandrolone decanoate, human growth hormone, and other performance-enhancing drugs, that was destined to Polk County from the Slovak Republic.
On May 26, 2009, Polk Tactical Drug Unit detectives and ICE agents from Tampa served a search warrant at the Lakeland residence where the steroids were to be delivered, the home of Thomas at 1087 Stoney Creek Drive.
According to the report, the warrant served at Thomas’ home led to the discovery of multiple firearms, more than $200,000 worth of illegal steroids and extensive documents, including shipping labels showing that Thomas had received steroids from Bulgaria, China, The Czech Republic, Greece, India, Iran, Moldova, Pakistan, Russia, The Slovak Republic, Thailand, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.
After being placed under arrest, Thomas described himself to investigators as “the largest steroid dealer in Central Florida,” according to the Sheriff’s Office. Thomas went on to say that he had sold steroids to a doctor named Douglas Nagel, who lives in the Washington, D.C., area. Detectives found a shipping label in Thomas’ home addressed to Doug Nagel in Sterling, Va.
According to the Sheriff’s Office report, Thomas told detectives that Nagel said he worked with professional athletes in the Washington, D.C., area and that he had boasted about supplying steroids to these athletes.
Detectives obtained subpoenas for shipping labels from the U.S. Postal Service and Federal Express to corroborate the shipment of packages between Thomas and Nagel. According to the report, detectives learned that Nagel sent seven packages via FedEx to Thomas from April 4, 2008, to May 4, 2009. In interviews with Nagel and Thomas, both men confirmed that these packages contained money sent from Nagel to Thomas, according to the report. After receiving the money, Thomas then sent Nagel large quantities of anabolic steroids, per Nagel’s request.
Aided by the U.S. Postal Service, Polk detectives were able to recover two packing labels from Thomas to Nagel. One confirmed that a package weighing 9.1 ounces was sent to Nagel from Thomas on Aug. 11, 2008, and the other confirmed that a package weighing 14 ounces was sent to Nagel from Thomas on May 4, 2009.
Both men admitted that these packages contained illegal anabolic steroids, according to the Sheriff’s Office report.
The Polk Sheriff’s Office reports that it has no conclusive evidence or proof that Nagel has provided any steroids to any professional athletes.
Thomas currently is awaiting federal sentencing on charges of possession of anabolic steroids with intent to sell or distribute and importation of anabolic steroids into Florida.