New York pharmacy owners charged in $30M COVID-19 scam


2 NYC Pharmacy Owners Charged In COVID Fraud Case | PYMNTS.com

The owners of more than a dozen pharmacies in New York City and Long Island have been arrested and charged for their roles in an alleged $30 million healthcare fraud and money laundering scheme, the Department of Justice announced Dec. 21. 

Peter Khaim and Arkadiy Khaimov are accused of submitting fraudulent claims for expensive cancer drugs by exploiting emergency codes and edits in the Medicare system that went into effect due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The drugs were allegedly never provided, ordered or authorized by a medical professional. 

Mr. Khaim and Mr. Khaimov allegedly used COVID-19 emergency override billing codes to submit fraudulent claims to Medicare for cancer medication Targretin Gel 1%. The medication has an average wholesale price of about $34,000 for each 60 gram tube, according to the Justice Department. 

Prosecutors charged Mr. Khaim and Mr. Khaimov with conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud and wire fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering and aggravated identity theft, according to the Justice Department. Mr. Khaimov was separately charged with concealment of money laundering.

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