Tag: Health care fraud

July 13, 2017

The Lowdown on Takedowns

Attorney General Jeff Sessions and a battery of other federal law enforcement officials today announced the “largest health care fraud takedown” in U.S. history, with 412 charged defendants, including 56 doctors, accused of defrauding taxpayers of roughly $1.3 billion.  Importantly, the takedown focused on the over-prescription of opioids, a phenomenon that has led to thousands… Read More

January 11, 2013

Online Pharma Exec Gets 4 Years in Prison for Selling Foreign Drugs in U.S.

Andrew Strempler, a Canadian citizen who helped to pioneer the cross-border online pharmacy industry, was sentenced on January 9, 2013, to four years in prison in connection with allegations that his former company sold fake and misbranded drugs to U.S. citizens. The sentence follows Strempler’s guilty plea in October in federal court in Miami to… Read More

January 4, 2013

Are the Feds Enlisting FedEx to Police the Illegal Pharma Market?

The government may be coming up with a new cost-effective measure to help balance the federal budget – enlisting private companies to do their policing. A 2011 settlement between the Justice Department and Google for $500 million is one recent example. Under the settlement, Google acknowledged responsibility for improperly aiding rogue pharmacies by allowing the… Read More

December 4, 2012

Are Medicaid Claims Becoming the Next Battleground for FCA Cases?

A qui tam case that was recently dismissed on summary judgment may signal the next front in the legal enforcement war arising from off-label use of prescription medications. In United States ex rel. Watson v. King-Vassel et al., filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, the complaint alleged that defendant… Read More

November 30, 2011

More Big Pharma Companies Cough Up Big Dollars in DOJ Settlements

The parade of major drug companies coughing up nine-digit or ten-digit dollar amounts in settlements with the U.S. government is continuing. GlaxoSmithKline recently broke a record by agreeing to pay the federal government $3 billion to settle an illegal pharmaceutical marketing case. This surpasses the previous record of $2.3 billion paid by Pfizer in 2009… Read More

October 10, 2011

District Judge Orders Much-Reduced Sentence in Fraud Case

A federal judge has made a major reversal in the case of Steve Warshak, the Berkeley Premium Nutraceuticals founder who was sentenced to 25 years for defrauding customers who bought his “male enhancement” pills, which were advertised in the notorious “Smiling Bob” ad campaign. We have discussed Warshak’s case in a previous blog post. Warshak… Read More

October 7, 2011

Judge Imposes Draconian Sentences in Medicare Fraud Scheme

On Sept. 16, 2011, a federal judge in Miami sentenced Lawrence Duran to 50 years in prison, the longest sentence ever imposed in a Medicare fraud case, for his role in a massive fraud scheme that resulted in more than $205 million in losses. Duran was also ordered to pay $87 million in restitution. Duran… Read More

August 3, 2011

Is Unsealing False Claims Act Complaints the Right Answer?

Companies should make vigorous efforts to unseal civil False Claims Act complaints against them earlier in the process in an effort to achieve better results, argues Michael K. Loucks, a former acting U.S. attorney for the District of Massachusetts who is currently a Boston-based partner in a major law firm. Loucks also co-authored a post… Read More

March 31, 2011

Strike Force Hits Hard at Massive Medicare Fraud

Last month, the Federal Medicare Strike Force charged 111 defendants in nine states for their alleged participation in fraud schemes that reportedly cost Medicare almost a quarter billion dollars. Last month’s sweep resulted from the Justice Department’s and Health and Human Services’ work with the FBI, the HHS  inspector general, and various state and local law… Read More

January 11, 2011

It’s Not Just the Conviction — It’s Also the Consequences

Attention: top executives in the healthcare industry. Take heed, or you could be forced to seek employment in a different industry, as three former top executives at Purdue Pharma recently found out. In May 2007, Purdue Frederick, a subsidiary of Purdue Pharma L.P., pleaded guilty to felony misbranding of its painkiller drug, Oxycontin, as part… Read More

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