- Attorney General Jeffrey S. Chiesa announced
today that a Newark pharmacist has pleaded
guilty for his role in a scheme in which pharmacy
owners and employees purchased prescriptions
including HIV/AIDS drugs from indigent patients
so Medicaid could be billed for medications
that were never actually dispensed.
Osei, 34, of Sayreville, pleaded guilty
on Friday, March 9 to third-degree Medicaid
fraud before Superior Court Judge Martin
Cronin in Essex County. The charge was contained
in an Oct. 26, 2009 state grand jury indictment.
Cronin scheduled the sentencing for May
4. Under the plea agreement, the state will
recommend Osei be sentenced to 60 days county
jail and a three-year term of probation.
Osei will also be ordered to pay $100,000
in restitution and fines.
pleading guilty, Osei, who is a licensed
pharmacist at Campus Pharmacy in Newark,
admitted that between May 11, 2006 and Oct.
15, 2008 he knowingly submitted fraudulent
claims to the Medicaid program for medications
that were not dispensed.
Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Ronald Chillemi
noted that this case was part of Operation
PharmScam, which revealed that six pharmacies
and two medical clinics in Jersey City and
Newark participated in a multi-million dollar
conspiracy to defraud Medicaid. During the
course of the investigation, 14 individuals,
including pharmacists, pharmacy technicians
and the owner of a medical clinic were charged.
Under this scheme, the pharmacies were billing
Medicaid for high priced AIDS/HIV and specialty
drugs that were never ordered from the wholesalers
or dispensed to the beneficiaries. Osei
is the last of the defendants to plead guilty
in this case.
Attorneys General David Noble and Dolores
Blackburn and Detective Kevin Gannon
were assigned to the investigation. Noble
and Blackburn represented the Office of
the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor at the guilty