A former emergency room physician decided his disability checks weren’t bringing him enough money: So he began selling crystal methamphetamine in Broward County, federal court documents say.
Carlton Cash, 49, started his enterprise by purchasing $100,000 worth of the drug. But after one of his regular buyers was arrested and became an informant for federal investigators, Cash’s scheme of supplying small-time dealers was exposed.
He was charged and convicted of selling over 150 grams of crystal meth over an eight-month period. Last week, he was sentenced to 10 years in prison in Miami.
Before his short-lived career in dealing drugs, Cash graduated from the University of Alabama School of Medicine and had been a licensed doctor in seven states, including Florida, according to court documents.
In 2004 he suffered near-fatal injuries from a car accident and in 2014 was declared disabled. He began receiving $15,000 in monthly disability payments.
According to court documents, Cash began using crystal meth shortly after moving to Fort Lauderdale in 2018.
It is unclear exactly when Cash began dealing drugs, but law enforcement got tipped off to him in December 2019 after an undercover operation between federal investigators and Broward detectives nabbed a man Cash had been selling ounces of crystal meth to at a time.
The man told police Cash was known to buy pounds of the drug from California, according to court records. He turned informant and made a series of buys from Cash while police monitored his every move with recording devices.
In text messages, Cash bragged about the quality of his product, according to court documents. “It’s high grade s--- from south Cali,” he said in one text. “Probably made in Mexico.”
A number of the drug buys between the informant and Cash took place at Cash’s North Victoria Park home.
But by February, Cash told the informant in a text message that he’d been paid a visit by drug task force investigators at the Broward Sheriff’s Office.
“They told me they knew enough to present a case to get a search warrant and probably arrest me,” he wrote. He said he was told that if he didn’t stop selling drugs, his house would be confiscated, and he would do 5 to 10 years in prison, “BEFORE parole!”
“So needless to say my ass is SCARED and will do EXACTLY what they said to get them off my case!!” he wrote the informant. “Therefore I’m completely finished!!”
But according to court documents, Cash continued to sell drugs in at least three more buys monitored by investigators.
In August, Cash was set up for a bust at his home in Fort Lauderdale. After requesting two ounces of meth, the informant said Cash told him his supply was low because his supplier in California had died of COVID-19.
The two agreed to the sale of half an ounce instead.
As Cash exited his home for the sale, he was arrested.
In his home, investigators found two safes with more drugs and two loaded pistols, according to court documents.
In December, Cash pleaded guilty in Miami federal court to five counts of possession with the intent to distribute crystal methamphetamine.
Cash remains in the custody of U.S. Marshals in South Florida. The court recommended that he be transferred to a prison in Alabama, where he was born and raised.
Andrew Boryga can be reached at 954-356-4533 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter @borywrites.