Newspapers dig for dirt in background of United passenger

The story about a man dragged off a United Airlines flight yesterday has now reached its “let’s dredge up his criminal history” phase.

The Louisville Courier-Journal does the honors today with a deep dive into the life of David Dao, the passenger who said he was a doctor who had to get home to see his patients.

He’s a doctor, true. But he lost his medical license once because of fraud involving prescription drugs.

Dao, who went to medical school in Vietnam in the 1970s before moving to the U.S., was working as a pulmonologist in Elizabethtown when he was arrested in 2003 and eventually convicted of drug-related offenses after an undercover investigation, according to documents filed with the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure last June. The documents allege that he was involved in fraudulent prescriptions for controlled substances and was sexually involved with a patient who used to work for his practice and assisted police in building a case against him.

Dao was convicted of multiple felony counts of obtaining drugs by fraud or deceit in November 2004 and was placed on five years of supervised probation in January 2005. He surrendered his medical license the next month.

The Daily Mail also looked at his past and, unlike the Courier-Journal, left his criminal history out. And, unlike the Courier-Journal, put his family life in. can reveal Dr Dao is a father of five and a grandfather, who specializes in internal medicine. Four of his five children are doctors.

His wife Teresa, 69, is a pediatrican who trained at Ho Chi Minh University in Saigon and also practices in Elizabethtown, Kentucky – about 40 miles south of Louisville.

Their eldest son Tim, 34, practices medicine in Texas; their second son Ben, 31, is a medical graduate; their daughter Christine, 33, is a doctor in Durham, NC; and their youngster daughter Angela, 27, is a medical graduate of the University of Kentucky. takes an even deeper dive into his past, including allegations that he paid off a former co-worker to keep him from telling his wife about alleged unwanted sexual advances.

Bottom line? They dig for dirt. If you’ve got a past you don’t want dredged up, get off the plane.