10 in west Kentucky charged with health fraud


Notably, however, the DOJ emphasized what it described as a "particular focus on medical professionals involved in the unlawful distribution of opioids and other prescription narcotics". They include 76 doctors, 23 pharmacists, 19 nurses, and other medical workers.

Federal agencies on Thursday announced charges in what Attorney General Jeff Sessions called "the largest health care fraud takedown in American history", an investigation into over $2 billion in alleged fraud by doctors, pharmacists, and nurses. Of the 601 arrests, 161 doctors, licensed medical professionals, and other suspects are charged with prescribing and distributing addictive opioid painkillers.

According to the CDC, 42,000 people died from opioid overdoses in the U.S.in 2016 alone.

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The cases included charges in Texas against a pharmacy chain owner and two other people accused of using fraudulent prescriptions to fill bulk orders for over 1 million hydrocodone and oxycodone pills that were sold to drug couriers. Several face charges of unlawfully dispensing controlled substances, including Dr. Peter Steiner, a psychiatrist who operated Kentuckiana Mental Health Associates, who is accused of prescribing unnecessary drugs. That's why this Department of Justice has taken historic new steps to go after fraudsters, including hiring more prosecutors and leveraging the power of data analytics. Officials said Ruiz operated a false-front pharmacy where he stole and used the identities of patients and doctors to bill for prescriptions that patients never received, resulting in approximately $858,000 being paid out in fraudulent proceeds.

United States v. Lacey Staveley: Lacey Staveley, also a nurse, was charged with one count of acquiring a controlled substance by misrepresentation, fraud, deception, and subterfuge, and three counts of false statements relating to health care matters.

The arrests came as part of what the department said was the largest health care fraud takedown in US history. Fanopoulos' trial is set for August 21, 2018, in front of Senior U.S. District Court Judge Edward J. Lodge at the federal courthouse in Boise.

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Peresiper, a medical clinic business manager, was charged with conspiracy to pay health care kickbacks related to Pulmonary Solutions and Multi Care Medical NY, both in Brooklyn.

"These defendants, motivated by pure greed, helped conduct a complicated scheme to obtain unnecessary, high-priced medications, purely to gain the insurance reimbursement", said Birmingham FBI Field Office Special Agent in Charge Johnnie Sharp Jr.

Meanwhile, Coleman predicted that he'll have "much more to report" in the efforts to uproot health care fraud. They were all participants in fraud schemes, which resulted in the Department of health lost more than $ 2 billion. Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force has charged over 3,700 defendants who collectively have falsely billed the Medicare program for over $14 billion.

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