Police want help tracking down employee who stole diabetic supplies for black market

Prosecutors: Hospital employee stole diabetic supplies for black market
Published: Dec. 27, 2017 at 4:36 PM HST|Updated: Jan. 5, 2018 at 1:16 PM HST
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(Image: CrimeStoppers)
(Image: CrimeStoppers)

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Police are asking for the public's help in tracking down a woman indicted for allegedly stealing diabetic test strips that were later sold on the black market.

Stacie-Lynn Pihana, 47, is wanted on a $250,000 grand jury bench warrant for first-degree theft.

Pihana worked in the pharmacy at the Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center and, prosecutors say, over the course of roughly 14 months ordered and then intercepted more than 2,000 cases of the test strips before destroying all corresponding paperwork and taking them from the facility.

Pihana is described as being 5-foot-2 and 180 pounds. Police said she is Hawaiian and has brown hair and brown eyes.

Authorities say the hospital lost more than $695,000 under Pihana's schemes.

An indictment alleged that Pihana began stealing the medical supplies from the hospital in July 2016 and then selling them to a local source.

Prosecutors say the local source then transported the boxes of test strips to Las Vegas for resale.

"There's a definite demand on the black market for diabetic test strips," said Chris Van Marter, deputy city prosecutor. "They can be very expensive, and they're a necessary product for people dealing with the challenges of diabetes. So people are looking for ways to find them at cheaper prices."

The consumer re-sale of legally-acquired diabetic test strips is itself a growing industry; many websites offer cash for unused, unopened boxes of the strips, which measure blood-sugar levels, before turning around and selling them for a profit.

Anyone who spots Pihana is asked to call police or CrimeStoppers at 955-8300.

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