Bronx HIV Drug Swindle Ends in $7.9M Deal

MANHATTAN (CN) — As the last participant in a Bronx Medicaid fraud that preyed on HIV-positive patients received a prison sentence on Thursday, New York’s attorney general announced a $7.9 million civil settlement on the case.

Nearly three years have passed since authorities busted 184th Street Pharmacy in the Bronx, accusing its co-owners and supervisor of defrauding Medicare to the tune of $10 million since 2013.

As alleged by prosecutors, the men paid patients hundreds of dollars to skip medications for which they later filed claims.

A Bronx judge sentenced one of those owners, Tarek Elsayed, to between one to two years in state prison today. That is the same term given to the pharmacy’s supervisor Mohamed Hassan Ahmed in October. The pharmacy’s co-owner Ahmed Hamed has been serving a two-to-six year term since August.

New York Attorney General Eric Scheiderman said that his Medicaid Fraud Control Unit reached a $3.8 million settlement with Hamed and $4.1 million deal with Elsayed.

“These defendants abused the fundamental trust between healthcare providers and patients by putting their own greed above the health needs of their patients,” Schneiderman said in a statement Thursday. “This blatant theft and abuse of our state and country’s most important healthcare programs is reprehensible and will not be tolerated.”

Hamed had to forfeit a Maserati and BMW he bought on from the proceeds of the fraud.

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