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For Immediate Release:  
For Further Information Contact:
July 13, 2005

Office of The Attorney General
- Peter C. Harvey, Attorney General
Division of Criminal Justice
- Vaughn L. McKoy, Director
Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor
- Greta Gooden Brown, Insurance Fraud Prosecutor

 

Rachel Sacharow
609-984-1936

 

Monmouth County Pharmacist Sentenced to State Prison for Medicaid Fraud Scam

TRENTON - Division of Criminal Justice Director Vaughn L. McKoy announced that a Monmouth County pharmacist has been sentenced to state prison and ordered to pay more than $450,000 in fines and restitution after pleading guilty to using “runners” and paying kickbacks to medical providers as part of a scam to defraud Medicaid. The Medicaid Program, which is funded by the state and federal governments, provides health care services and prescription drugs to persons who may not otherwise be able to afford such services and medicines.

According to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden-Brown, Rammohan Pabbathi, 58, Amy Court, Howell, was sentenced by Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Bette E. Uhrmacher to three years in state prison and ordered to pay $450,000 in restitution and fines to the Medicaid Program. Pabbathi paid the $450,000 prior to sentencing.

Brown noted that Pabbathi pled guilty to a criminal Accusation filed by the Division of Criminal Justice - Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor on March 23. The Accusation charged Pabbathi with Health Care Claims Fraud. In pleading guilty, Pabbathi, the owner/operator of GLV Parke Warner Pharmacy in Neptune, Monmouth County, admitted that he fraudulently billed Medicaid for prescriptions that the pharmacy did not dispense. An undercover investigation by the Division of Criminal Justice - Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor determined that Pabbathi paid “kickbacks” to patients for prescriptions that were then submitted to Medicaid. In one instance, an undercover investigator posed as a Medicaid recipient and presented a prescription for an expensive HIV medicine. The Medicaid recipient did not pick up the medication, yet Pabbathi billed Medicaid as if the drug had been dispensed. The Medicaid Program paid $1,130 for that one prescription medication.

State Investigators Jacqueline Latty and Robert McGrath, and Deputy Attorney General Erik W. Daab were assigned to the investigation. DAG Daab represented the Division of Criminal Justice - Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor at the sentencing. The Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services assisted in the investigation.

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