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|Ga. Supreme Court upholds murder conviction of doctor who lured men with drugs for sex|
|by Dyana Bagby|
|May 31, 2011 11:01|
The Georgia Supreme Court has upheld the murder conviction and life sentence handed down to a doctor convicted of felony murder for prescribing pain medications to a gay lover who later died of an overdose.
Dr. Noel Chua, who was in his mid-40s, began treating James Bazley Carter III, 19, in Sept. 2005 for debilitating headaches. Chua prescribed Carter such medications as morphine, methadone and oxycodone.
A month later, in October, Carter moved in with Chua in his home in Camden County, nearly 6 hours south of Atlanta near Jacksonville, Fla., while he continued to attend community college.
On Dec. 15, 2005, Chua called 911 and Carter was found dead in the bathroom. Police found loose pills, prescription drug bottles and physician drug samples. Medical experts testified at Chua’s trial in Oct. 2007 that Carter died of a combination methadone, oxycodone and morphine in his system along with other drugs.
Chua was found guilty of violating the Georgia Controlled Substances Act for distributing morphine, oxycodone and methadone and convicted for felony murder and sentenced to life in prison.
In the unanimous decision handed down today, the state Supreme Court found that “evidence authorized the jury to find [Chua] guilty beyond a reasonable doubt” of prescribing narcotics not “for a legitimate medical purpose,” in violation of the state’s Georgia Controlled Substances.
The court ruled that Chua knew there was a risk of death to Carter because of his history of drug abuse.
Top photo: Noel Chua. (courtesy Georgia Department of Corrections)
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