Unlicensed Beverly Hills Doctor in Federal Prison for Injecting Smuggled Silicone

An Argentine doctor who used the homes of wealthy Beverly Hills residents to deliver non FDA-approved injectibles, was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison. The clients of Dr. Daniel Tomas Fuerte Serrano included the wives of Lionel Richie and CNN talk-show host Larry King. Prosecutors say he gave the illegal injections at various places, including parties, where up to 30 wealthy clients sipped cocktails and were injected with silicone smuggled into the U.S.

Serrano wasn't licensed to practice in the United States, prosecutors said, and he charged thousands of dollars for injections of substances consistent with industrial grade silicone used to lubricate auto parts, as well as medical grade silicone, which is used for some eye surgeries but is not approved as wrinkle filler, according to court papers. As part of a plea agreement, he admitted giving the illegal injections from 2001 until November 2004. He earned a total of more than $1.6 million during that period, according to court papers. According to court papers, some of Serrano's clients developed problems after the injections. All the clients claimed they were unaware that Serrano was not licensed in California.

Authorities also arrested three cosmetologists on federal charges of aiding and abetting Serrano. At the time of Serrano's arrest, prosecutors also charged Lionel Richie's wife Diane with aiding and abetting the doctor.