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Two New York pharmacy owners complicit in $18M COVID-19 health care fraud

Two pharmacy owners sentenced for Medicare fraud

Two New York pharmacy owners have been sentenced in an $18M COVID-19 healthcare fraud and money laundering case.

Peter Khaim, 44, and his brother Arkadiy Khaimov, 41, both of Forrest Hills, New York, were prosecuted by the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section’s Northeast Strike Force.

The pair supposedly made millions from fraudulent Medicare filings and washed the ill-gotten gains through shell companies.

Brother’s sentenced in million-dollar Medicare fraud case

The documents presented to the court stated that the pair were embroiled in a medical fraud scheme that spanned sixteen New York pharmacies.

Two very expensive and rare medications were at the center of the illicit plan the brothers had. Cancer treatment drugs, Targretin Gel 1% and Panretin Gel 0.1%, were given out when pharmacies were closed.

Both the brothers exploited the ordering of these drugs via billing codes that the court described as “emergency override” orders to meet the needs of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Khaim and Khaimov reportedly used shell companies to funnel the 18 million dollar proceeds. They connected to sham corporations and outside entities in China and Uzbekistan. Cashier cheques then arrived at the doors of the brothers and their conspirators, who turned out to be family members.

They used these proceeds to defraud the United States government and the policies implemented for COVID-19 emergency medical ordering procedures. This would fund a lifestyle of luxury items and property built on the backs of fraudulent cancer drugs and illegitimate shell companies.

The Health Care Fraud Strike Force Program coordinated the tactical prosecution of the pair. According to the Justice Department, the program has charged more than 5,400 defendants. These illicit practitioners have racked up a considerable tab, totaling $27 billion, at the expense of private insurers and federal healthcare programs.

Khaim pleaded guilty on Nov. 3, 2022, to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. He was ordered to pay more than $18 million in restitution and forfeit more than $2.7 million.

Khaimov pleaded guilty on Nov. 16, 2022, to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. He was ordered to pay more than $18 million in restitution and to forfeit more than $9.6 million.

Image: Ideogram.

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