Nevada Gov. Sisolak wants more plutonium answers from DOE
CARSON CITY — Gov. Steve Sisolak wants Energy Secretary Rick Perry to provide more details about the weapons-grade plutonium the government secretly shipped to Nevada and a full accounting of materials already stored there.
Sisolak wrote in a letter to Perry Wednesday that his “callous disregard” for Nevada’s interests has endangered residents and “destroyed any semblance of trust” DOE may have developed previously.
DOE disclosed last week it trucked 1,000 pounds (453 kilograms) of plutonium from South Carolina to the Nevada National Security Site near Las Vegas over the state’s objections last year.
The department insists appropriate notice was provided in August when it approved plans to temporarily store plutonium there to meet a court-ordered deadline to remove it from South Carolina by 2020.
The state plans to appeal the recent refusal of a U.S. judge in Reno to block future shipments.
Rural Nevada hospital exec guilty of opioid charges
WINNEMUCCA — A senior doctor at a rural hospital in northern Nevada has pleaded guilty to writing illegal prescriptions for narcotics including opioids without a medical purpose.
Dr. Shouping Li of Winnemucca pleaded guilty to distribution of a controlled substance Tuesday before U.S. District Judge Miranda Du in Reno.
The 57-year-old vice chief of staff for Humboldt County General Hospital faces up to 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine at his sentencing June 10.
Li admitted prescribing painkillers including Oxycodone and Hydrocodone without a legitimate purpose between August 2015 and February 2018.
Federal prosecutors say he also admitted several of his patients died while he actively attended to them.
Nicholas Trutanich, U.S. attorney for northern Nevada, said Wednesday his office is committed to investigating and prosecuting doctors who “abuse their position of trust and fuel the opioid epidemic.”