KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A Maryville doctor faces up to 20 years in prison after he pleaded guilty in federal court to running his Knoxville pain clinic as an illegal drug premises.

Dr. David Newman, 61, of Maryville entered a guilty plea Monday in U.S. Federal court in the Eastern District of Tennessee. He was charged with maintaining his Tennessee Valley Pain Specialists clinic in South Knoxville as an illegal drug premises. He faces a prison sentence of up to 20 years.

Newman owned the clinic with Dr. Steven Mynatt and served as the clinic’s medical director despite knowing that Mynatt was prescribing opioids to patients outside professional practice and for no legitimate medical purpose, according to a U.S. Justice Dept. release.

Newman and Mynatt were charged with drug-related offenses as part of the April 2019 Appalachian Regional Prescription Opioid Strick Force Surge. Mynatt entered a guilty plea related to his distribution of controlled substances in February 2020.

Newman and Mynatt will be sentenced on Feb. 9, 2022.

The investigation was conducted by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, FBI, DEA and the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Services. FBI agents were seen searching the pain clinic on Gov. John Sevier Highway in March 2019.