Report: Victim convicted of felony drug charges
The Vietnamese doctor who was thrust into the international spotlight this week after he was dragged from an overbooked United Airlines flight against his will was reportedly convicted of multiple felony drugs charges in 2004.
Videos taken Sunday by other passengers showing Dr. David Dao being forcibly removed on a Louisville-bound flight at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago sparked a social media firestorm against the airline.
United apologized for the “upsetting event” and said Tuesday that “we take full responsibility and we will work to make it right.”
According to the Courier-Journal in Louisville, Dr. Dao is a pulmonologist, a physician who specializes in treating respiratory conditions, in Elizabethtown and he was arrested in 2003 and eventually convicted of multiple drugrelated offenses after an undercover investigation.
According to documents filed with the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure, Dr. Dao was involved in fraudulent prescriptions for controlled substances and was involved with a man whom he arranged to trade prescription drugs for sexual acts, the New York Post reported.
Mr. Dao, who went to medical school in Vietnam in the 1970s before moving to the U.S., was convicted of multiple felony counts of obtaining drugs by fraud or deceit in November 2004 and placed on five years of supervised probation in January 2005, the Courier-Journal reported.
In February 2005, Dr. Dao surrendered his medical license to the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure. In 2015, the board lifted the suspension and allowed him to practice medicine with some restrictions, the report said.
While the report shines a light on Dr. Dao’s checkered medical career, it does not suggest that his past was connected to Sunday’s incident.
An attorney for Dr. Dao, who is being treated for his reported injuries at a Chicago hospital, issued a statement on the doctor’s behalf Tuesday afternoon.
“The family of Dr. Dao wants the world to know that they are very appreciative of the outpouring of prayers, concern and support they have received. Currently, they are focused only on Dr. Dao’s medical care and treatment,” Chicago attorney Stephen Golan said.