'El Dentista' pleads not guilty to illegal dentistry

Posted at: 06/04/2013 8:13 AM
Updated at: 06/04/2013 8:15 AM
By: The Associated Press

Eliver Kestler
Eliver Kestler

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - An unlicensed tooth doctor who called himself "El Dentista" has pleaded not guilty to charges of illegally practicing dentistry, possession of dangerous drugs and other charges stemming from allegations he operated a mobile dentistry out of a sedan in Santa Fe.

Thirty-six-year-old Eliver Kestler was arraigned Monday after being arrested and jailed in April after a patient called police.  He was indicted Thursday on a total of 9 charges.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that a prosecutor says Kestler could face 12 years if convicted on the current charges.

However, Assistant District Attorney Mark Pustay says Kestler could face a total of 76 years in prison because he was previously convicted of similar felony charges in California and could be sentenced as an habitual offender.

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