A St. John's pharmacist has been fined for improperly dispensing drugs.

Gerald Whalen, 71, pleaded guilty to two counts of breaching regulations under the federal Food and Drugs Act on Friday at provincial court in St. John's. Whalen, who worked at East End Pharmacy, was jointly charged with the owner of the store, Lloyd Bennett, three years ago.

Whalen has been fined $250 on each of the two breaches — writing a prescription without doctor's consent and failing to sign off on a prescription.

Whalen and Bennett initially faced over 200 charges, including fraud, forgery and improperly dispensing drugs. Since then, the number of charges before the court has dwindled.

The Newfoundland and Labrador Pharmacy Board has already suspended Whalen for three years and fined him $20,000.

The Crown said it felt the board's ruling included serious enough penalties, and dropped the criminal charges against him. The Crown asked for the minimum for breaching regulations.

Bennett is scheduled to go to trial in Supreme Court in September.

Suspended before

The two men were disciplined before by the Newfoundland and Labrador Pharmacy Board.

In 2009, a hearing by the pharmacy board found Bennett and Whalen were guilty of several cases of professional misconduct, including filling prescriptions that weren't ordered by physicians or requested by patients.

In 2000, Whalen's licence was suspended for three months after pharmacy board hearings found he was guilty of a number of incidents of professional misconduct.

With files from Glenn Payette.