Plea deal in case of ‘lamb’s fat’ in­jec­tions

Los Angeles Times - - CITY & STATE - By Alene Tchekm­e­dyian alene.tchekm­e­dyian @la­times.com Twit­ter: @AleneTchek

A Mon­terey Park beau­ti­cian ac­cused in a botched but­tocks en­hance­ment that left a client in need of ma­jor cor­rec­tive surgery pleaded guilty Mon­day to a fed­eral charge, of­fi­cials said.

Ana Bertha Diaz Her­nan­dez — who pock­eted at least $40,000 for “reck­lessly” per­form­ing in­jec­tions on more than 10 cus­tomers — is fac­ing three years in prison for one count of re­ceipt of an adul­ter­ated and mis­branded med­i­cal de­vice, ac­cord­ing to court records.

The woman charged thou­sands of dol­lars for what she de­scribed as “lamb’s fat” in­jec­tions, court records said, which she had smug­gled into the U.S. from Mex­ico and used on her clients “de­spite the risk of death or se­ri­ous bod­ily in­jury.” Of­fi­cials said Her­nan­dez held no li­censes in the U.S. that qual­i­fied her to per­form the in­jec­tions.

In one case, court records said, the in­jec­tions mi­grated to the client’s back, hips and legs. The client, iden­ti­fied in court records only as “I.T.,” was hos­pi­tal­ized and needed ma­jor surgery to re­move the sub­stance, which of­fi­cials said was pos­si­bly sil­i­cone.

The U.S. Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion has never ap­proved the use of in­jectable sil­i­cone for body con­tour­ing, of­fi­cials said, even when ad­min­is­tered by a med­i­cal doc­tor.

As part of the plea agree­ment, Her­nan­dez agreed to pay $30,000 in resti­tu­tion to the woman, an amount that cov­ers what the woman paid for the in­jec­tions, as well as the travel and med­i­cal costs as­so­ci­ated with the re­con­struc­tive surgery.

Pros­e­cu­tors agreed to rec­om­mend that Her­nan­dez spend only two years in prison. Un­der the plea deal, two other charges will be dropped at her sen­tenc­ing in De­cem­ber.

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