Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Latest Cases Involve Fraud, Pill Mill

Lazaro Delgado, a native of Cuba. was sentenced to 10 years -- more than the guidelines -- for a $1.8 Medicare fraud, according to the Miami Herald.Before turning to the federal health-care program, Delgado was convicted of trafficking in guns and cocaine and accused of trying to have an informant killed, not to mention mortgage fraud. In the Medicare fraud case, prosecutors said he took over two home-health agencies and used straw owners to avoid detection.

Then instead of actually serving patients, according to the plea agreement, Delgado submitted phony claims with stolen ID numbers from doctors and patients.

In an unrelated case in Tampa, a federal jury found pharmacist Emmanuel L. Mekowulu guilty of illegally prescribing 50,000 oxycodone pills, the Tampa Bay Times reports. Among those who testified against him was Dr. Jeffrey Friedlander, who drew a nine-year sentence for signing blank prescriptions for the pain pills.

Carol Gentry, founder and special correspondent of Health News Florida, has four decades of experience covering health finance and policy, with an emphasis on consumer education and protection.