- Attorney General Stuart Rabner and Criminal
Justice Director Gregory A. Paw announced
that a former Union County pharmacist and
a former Morris County pharmacy technician
have pleaded guilty to stealing drugs from
hospitals and selling them to an East Orange
to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden
Brown, Gayford Yaw, 43, of Landing, pleaded
guilty yesterday to a third-degree charge
of theft by unlawful taking before Superior
Court Judge Michael Ravin in Essex County.
On Oct. 30, Stephen Dwamena, 60, of Union,
also pleaded guilty before Judge Ravin to
a charge of third-degree theft by unlawful
a former pharmacy technician at Atlantic
Health Systems/Morristown Hospital and at
Ojah Pharmacy on Sussex Avenue in East Orange,
admitted that between Sept. 26, 2002 and
June 9, 2004, he stole more than $13,000
worth of medication from Morristown Hospital,
including Zithromax, Combivir, Lipitor,
Zocor, Accupril, Diovan, Celebrex, Augmentin,
Zoloft, Zyprexa and others. An investigation
determined that Yaw sold the stolen drugs
to Ojah Pharmacy.
Dwamena, who was employed as a pharmacist
by Trinitas Hospital located in Elizabeth
and University Hospital located in Newark,
admitted that he stole prescription medicine
from the hospitals and sold them to Ojah
Pharmacy in East Orange. Among the medicines
he admitted stealing were Diovan, Celebrex,
Lipitor, Nexium, Norvasc, Paxil, Seroquel,
Plavix, and Zyprexa. It is estimated that
these medicines had a total value of approximately
crimes carry a sentence of up to five years
in prison and a criminal fine of $15,000.
guilty pleas stem from an ongoing investigation
by the Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor’s
Medicaid Fraud Section concerning Ojah Pharmacy.
The investigation previously resulted in
the convictions at trial of Ojah Pharmacy,
its manager, Verona Boodram, and pharmacy
technician Alpha Bangoura on charges of
health care claims fraud and Medicaid fraud.
Bangoura was sentenced to six years in state
prison, and Boodram was sentenced to five
years in state prison. Boodram also was
ordered to pay $21,500 in restitution. The
court ordered Ojah Pharmacy to pay $21,500
in restitution and to pay $69,000 in fines
and penalties. It ordered the corporation
dissolved and revoked its permit to operate
State Investigator Jon Powers and Deputy
Attorney General Riza Dagli handled the
Prosecutor Brown noted that some important
cases have started with anonymous tips.
People who are concerned about insurance
cheating and have information about a fraud
can report it anonymously by calling the
toll-free hotline 1-877-55-FRAUD
or visiting the Web at www.njinsurancefraud.org.
State regulations permit an award to be
paid to an eligible person who provides
information that leads to an arrest, prosecution
and conviction for insurance fraud.
Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor was
established by the Automobile Insurance
Cost Reduction Act of 1998. The office is
the centralized state agency that investigates
and prosecutes both civil and criminal insurance
fraud, as well as Medicaid fraud.