Dr. Ruan's lawyer, Dennis Knizley, told CNBC that Ruan is no longer working at the clinic. Knizley said while Ruan still has his medical license he is not actively practicing medicine at this time, the biggest reason being the investigation and prosecution, which have "crippled him" in the public and financially. "They [the government] have seized without a hearing millions of assets of his," the lawyer said.
The lawyer denied that Perhac's employment was a kickback and said Dr. Ruan's relationship with the company were services for a physician who had eight board certifications and was highly qualified. He noted that speaking engagements for Dr. Ruan were in place before Perhacs had the job.
Knizley said that Perhac's salary and other payments to her were decisions made by Insys. "That's up to them," he said.
Ruan's lawyer also denied there was a romantic relationship between Dr. Ruan and Perhacs. "Did he recommend her for a job with Insys? Yes he did. She was accomplished sales person, a bright young lady," Knizley said.
Jury selection in the case of Drs. Ruan and Couch is scheduled for July.
Calls and emails to Dr. John Couch were not returned.
An Insys Therapeutics spokesperson provided a statement to CNBC saying that the company is still reviewing these developments, but it provides personnel with specific training on company policies and procedures designed to comply with applicable laws and regulations. In addition, Insys has a compliance program with protocols and monitoring specifically designed to ensure its sales and marketing practices comply with these laws and regulations. "Providing items of value to health care providers in order to induce prescriptions is a violation of the company's compliance policies," the company statement said.
Insys shares are down 40 percent year-to-date.
The Insys-related legal issues come amid a backdrop of a nationwide epidemic of opioid addiction that has attracted the attention of President Obama, who has asked for more than $1 billion to fight addiction, candidates for the presidency, and major corporations confronting the opioid abuse in the workplace.