Daily Dose of Justice

Daily Dose of Justice

GREENE COUNTY SHERIFF’S LIEUTENANT INDICTED FOR STEALING FBI MONEY

“LITTLE ROCK— A Greene County Sheriff’s Lieutenant has been charged with stealing government funds related to a ruse money seizure in Paragould.

Cody Hiland, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, announced today the return of an indictment charging Allen Scott Pillow, 55, of Paragould, with theft of government property, specifically $30,400 of FBI funds. A federal grand jury returned the indictment Wednesday night.

Pillow was arrested on a federal complaint on Tuesday, and was initially arraigned and then released by United States Magistrate Judge Patricia S. Harris on Wednesday. The case has been assigned to United States District Judge Billy Roy Wilson, who has set arraignment on the indictment for November 14, 2019 at 2 p.m.” read here

119 ILLEGAL ALIENS PROSECUTED FOR STEALING IDENTITIES OF AMERICANS, FALSIFYING IMMIGRATION DOCUMENTS, FRAUDULENTLY CLAIMING TO BE U.S. CITIZENS, OTHER CRIMES

Charges Stem from 680 Detained at Largest, Single-State Worksite Enforcement Action in Nation’s History

“Jackson, Miss. – U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst announced today that 119 illegal aliens have been prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office since the execution of multiple federal criminal and administrative search warrants at seven sites across the State of Mississippi on August 7, 2019. The federal indictments charge the defendants with crimes ranging from misusing social security numbers of American citizens, to fraudulently claiming to be a U.S. Citizen, to falsifying immigration documents, to reentering the United States after having previously been deported or removed.

To date, 47 of the 119 indicted illegal aliens have pled guilty, with a number of others indicating their intent to plead guilty. Of those who have already pled guilty, 26 admitted to fraudulently using the Social Security Number of an American citizen, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 408(a)(7)(B). The other 21 of these illegal aliens have pled guilty to unlawfully reentering the United States after having been previously deported or removed, in violation of 8 U.S.C. § 1326(a). The remaining have been charged with these same crimes, as well as some charged with falsely claiming to be a United States Citizen, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 911, and making false statements in immigration documents, in violated of 18 U.S.C. § 1546.” read here

UNITED STATES FILES COMPLAINT AGAINST PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANY GILEAD FOR PATENT INFRINGEMENT RELATED TO TRUVADA AND DESCOVY FOR PRE-EXPOSURE PROPHYLAXIS OF HIV

“The Department of Justice announced today that the United States has filed a complaint alleging infringement by Gilead Sciences Inc. and Gilead Sciences Ireland UC (collectively, Gilead) of four U.S. patents awarded to and owned by the United States, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). These patents cover specific drug regimens used for pre-exposure prophylaxis (commonly referred to as PrEP) that prevents HIV transmission. The complaint alleges infringement in connection with two of Gilead’s drugs, Truvada® and Descovy®, which Gilead markets for use to prevent HIV as part of the PrEP regimen.

‘Gilead has received billions of dollars in revenue from HIV prevention regimens invented by HHS researchers and patented by the United States,’ said Assistant Attorney General Jody Hunt of the Department of Justice’s Civil Division. ‘This lawsuit demonstrates the Department’s commitment to protect the government’s intellectual property and hold accountable those who seek to unfairly gain from the government’s research without paying reasonable royalties as the law requires.'” read here

DELHI FARMER SENTENCED FOR LYING TO VARIOUS BUSINESS AND GOVERNMENT ENTITIES TO STEAL NEARLY $18 MILLION

“MONROE, La. – A Delhi, Louisiana, farmer was sentenced today to 10 years in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release, for lying to more than seven financial institutions, insurance providers and government entities in an effort to obtain over $18 million illegally, announced United States Attorney David C. Joseph.

U.S. District Judge Terry A. Doughty also ordered Thomas A. Dickerson to pay $18,048,304.71 in restitution to the victims for the money he stole during the course of the scheme. Dickerson pled guilty on July 15, 2019.” read here

VANCOUVER, WASHINGTON, MAN CHARGED WITH MULTIPLE FEDERAL CRIMES FOR ONLINE EXPLOITATION OF TEENS

Defendant posed as teen and pressured victims into sending sexually explicit photos then blackmailed victims into sending additional videos

“Tacoma – A 39-year-old Vancouver, Washington, man was charged today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma with nine federal sex crimes for his scheme to entice and pressure young teens into sending him sexually explicit photos.  JOSHUA HENRY PUNT is charged with four counts of production of child pornography and five counts of enticement of a minor for his six-month criminal scheme.  PUNT used the messaging app ‘Kik’ and Snapchat to connect with young teens across the U.S.  Victims in this case have been identified in New York, Arkansas, California, Texas, and West Virginia.

‘This defendant is the ‘dangerous stranger’ we all hope our kids never meet,’ said U.S. Attorney Brian T. Moran.  ‘He is alleged to have trolled the internet, posing as a teen, and probing for vulnerabilities in those looking for friendship.  What followed were threats, blackmail, and the horror of possibly having private moments put on display.’” read here

BELLEVUE, WASHINGTON, LAB AND THREE EXECTUIVES INDICTED IN KICKBACK SCHEME

Co-Founder of Vancouver, Washington, lab pleads guilty to conspiracy to pay kickbacks involving federal healthcare programs

“Seattle – One defendant has pleaded guilty, and three others and a physician- owned testing lab have been indicted following the investigation of kickbacks in connection with laboratory testing services.  The grand jury returned indictments on November 6, 2019, against JAE LEE, 48, of Bellevue, RICHARD REID, 50, of Astoria, Oregon, KEVIN PULS, 54, of Bellevue, and Northwest Physicians Laboratory of Bellevue, Washington.  Both the company and the individual defendants are scheduled to make their first appearance in U.S. District Court in Seattle on December 5, 2019.

Northwest Physicians Laboratory (NWPL) and its relationship to Molecular Testing Labs (MTL) of Vancouver, Washington, are described in the plea agreement of STEVEN P. VERSCHOOR, 52, of Boise, Idaho, a co-founder of MTL.  VERSCHOOR pleaded guilty on October 30, 2019, admitting that he paid kickbacks to NWPL for referring urine tests to be performed at MTL.  According to the plea statements, starting in 2014, MTL agreed to pay NWPL as much as $100,000 per month to send patient urine tests to the Vancouver lab.  NWPL is physician-owned, and for that reason could not test urine samples for patients covered by government health programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, and TRICARE.  In order to conceal the payment of the kickbacks, MTL and NWPL described the fees as being for marketing services; however, VERSCHOOR was not aware of any marketing services being performed.  In all, MTL paid NWPL $450,000.  In exchange, MTL was able to bill the government more than $2,000,000 for urine testing services.” read here

COMPOUND INGREDIENT SUPPLIER FAGRON HOLDING USA LLC TO PAY $22.05 MILLION TO RESOLVE ALLEGATIONS OF FALSE AND INFLATED AVERAGE WHOLESALE PRICES FOR INGREDIENTS USED IN COMPOUNDED PRESCRIPTIONS

“WASHINGTON – The Department of Justice announced today that Fagron Holding USA LLC (Fagron) has agreed to pay $22.05 million to resolve allegations concerning the establishment of false and inflated Average Wholesale Prices (AWPs) by its wholly owned subsidiary Freedom Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Freedom) for active pharmaceutical ingredients used in compound prescriptions. Freedom’s pricing scheme caused pharmacies that purchased Freedom’s compound ingredients to submit false prescription claims to the Defense Health Agency, which administers the TRICARE Program for the Department of Defense and the Department of Labor’s Office of Workers Compensation Programs (federal healthcare programs).

‘We will not allow the systematic abuse of federal healthcare programs through pricing schemes designed to enrich a few at the expense of federal taxpayers,’ said Assistant Attorney General Jody Hunt of the Department of Justice’s Civil Division. ‘Our commitment to protect these programs extends not only to the pursuit of those that submit fraudulent claims but also those who cause others to submit such claims.’” read here

HONDURAN NATIONAL MAN PLEADS GUILTY AND IS SENTENCED FOR IMMIGRATION CRIME

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A Honduran national man pled guilty to the felony offense of reentry of a removed alien, announced United States Attorney Mike Stuart. Edilberto Hernandez-Garcia, 43, was then immediately sentenced to “time served,” having spent approximately seven months previously incarcerated. He was immediately remanded to ICE to face administrative removal proceedings. Stuart commended the investigative efforts of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the Sophia Police Department, and the Raleigh County Office of the Prosecuting Attorney.

‘Seven prior removals,’ said United States Attorney Mike Stuart. ‘Hernandez-Garcia seems to think our immigration laws do not apply to him. Repeat offenders like Hernandez-Garcia are a drain on critical law enforcement resources.’” read here

NAVY EMPLOYEE SENTENCED TO 40 YEARS IN PRISON FOR CHILD PORNOGRAPHY OFFENSES WITH MULTIPLE VICTIMS

“A Navy employee, who resided in Silver Spring, Maryland, before moving to Japan, was sentenced today to 40 years in prison for the production, transportation and possession of child pornography.

Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur of the District of Maryland and Special Agent in Charge Jennifer C. Boone of the FBI’s Baltimore Field Office made the announcement.

Spencer E. Steckman, 36, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Paul W. Grimm of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. Steckman pleaded guilty on June 11, 2019, to one count of production of child pornography, one count of transportation of child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography. In addition to his prison sentence, Steckman received a lifetime of supervised release and was ordered to pay $120,000 in restitution to the victims.” read here

STOCKTON MAN SENTENCED TO 9 YEARS IN PRISON FOR DISTRIBUTING CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

“SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Jason Solomon, 44, of Stockton, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Troy L. Nunley to nine years in prison for distributing child pornography, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced.

According to court documents, in July 2016, Solomon used social media to send images of children engaged in sexually explicit conduct to a then-15-year-old girl. Law enforcement later became aware of Solomon’s sexually explicit chats with the 15-year-old victim. In January 2018, federal agents found Solomon possessing additional images of child pornography, some of which depict the sexual molestation of infants.

This case was the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian A. Fogerty prosecuted the case.” read here

FILIPINO NATIONAL INDICTED FOR AGGRAVATED SEXUAL ABUSE ON BOARD A CRUISE SHIP BOUND FOR THE USVI

“St. Thomas, USVIUnited States Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert for the District of the Virgin Islands announced today the return of an indictment charging a Filipino national, Louis Isom Mangampat, with aggravated sexual abuse. Mangampat was arraigned in federal court today in St. Thomas.

According to the indictment, Mangampat sexually assaulted a woman while on board a cruise ship bound for the Virgin Islands.” read here

SAN JACINTO COUNTY MAN GETS SIGNIFICANT TIME FOR SEXUALLY EXPLOITING YOUNG CHILDREN

“HOUSTON – A 27-year-old man from San Jacinto County has received a 35-year prison term following his convictions of producing and possessing child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.

James Robert Tumlinson pleaded guilty April 23.

Today, U.S. District Judge Keith P. Ellison downwardly departed from the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and ordered Tumlinson to serve 360 months for each count of the sexual exploitation of a child, otherwise known as production of child pornography. Those sentences will run concurrently. He also received another 60 months for the possession charge which were ordered to be served consecutively for a total of 420 months in federal prison.” read here

U.S. ATTORNEY ANNOUNCES THE ARREST OF 27 INDIVIDUALS, INCLUDING NYPD EMPLOYEES, FOR A MASSIVE BRIBERY SCHEME RELATING TO NO-FAULT AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE POLICIES

The Defendants, Including NYPD Employees, Medical Personnel, and Others, Are Alleged To Have Accepted Cash Bribes In Return For Providing the Leaders of the Scheme with the Confidential Information of More Than 60,000 Automobile Accident Victims

“Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York,  William F. Sweeney Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (‘FBI’), Anthony A. Scarpino Jr., the Westchester County District Attorney, Keith M. Corlett, Superintendent of the New York State Police (‘NYSP’), and James P. O’Neill, Commissioner of the New York City Police Department (‘NYPD’), announced the arrest today of 27 individuals – including five 911 operators and a uniformed police officer employed by the New York City Police Department (‘the NYPD Defendants’) – in connection with a multimillion-dollar scheme to commit bribery and violate the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (‘HIPAA’) (the ‘No-Fault Scheme’).  Twenty-three of the 27 defendants were arrested this morning in New York and New Jersey and are scheduled to appear before U.S. Magistrate Gabriel Gorenstein in federal court later today.  Defendant LATIFAH ABDUL-KHALIQ will be presented today before a U.S. Magistrate Judge in North Carolina, and defendant KOURTNEI WILLIAMS will be presented today before a U.S. Magistrate Judge in Miami, Florida.  Defendant LEON BLUE, a/k/a ‘Boochie,’ is in custody in New Jersey and will be presented in Manhattan at a later date.  Defendant TARA ROSE, a/k/a ‘Christine Waters,’ a/k/a ‘Christine Hinds,’ a/k/a ‘Taylor Hinds,’ was also arrested this morning, and will be presented in Manhattan at a later date.  The case is assigned to U.S. District Judge Paul G. Gardephe.” read here

MANHATTAN U.S. ATTORNEY ANNOUNCES SETTLEMENT OF LAWSUIT AGAINST SPINAL IMPLANT COMPANY, ITS CEO, AND ANOTHER EXECUTIVE FOR PAYING MILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN KICKBACKS TO SURGEONS

“Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, William F. Sweeney Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), and Scott J. Lampert, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Regional Office of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General (‘HHS-OIG’), announced today that the United States has settled a civil healthcare fraud lawsuit against LIFE SPINE INC. (‘LIFE SPINE’), MICHAEL BUTLER (‘BUTLER’), the founder, president, and chief executive officer of LIFE SPINE, and RICHARD GREIBER (‘GREIBER’), the vice president of business development of LIFE SPINE, alleging that LIFE SPINE paid kickbacks in the form of millions of dollars of consulting fees, royalties, and intellectual property acquisition fees to surgeons to induce them to use LIFE SPINE’s spinal implants, devices, and equipment. The surgeons who received these kickbacks accounted for approximately half of Life Spine’s domestic sales of spinal products from 2012 through 2018. In the settlement, LIFE SPINE agreed to pay $5.5 million, BUTLER agreed to pay $375,000, and GREIBER agreed to pay $115,000. Each defendant also made admissions and acknowledged and accepted responsibility for conduct alleged in the Government’s complaint as described further below. The amounts paid by LIFE SPINE and GREIBER under the settlement are based on the Office’s assessment of their ability to pay based on the financial information they provided.” read here

LONG ISLAND DOCTOR INDICTED FOR ILLEGAL DISTRIBUTION OF OXYCODONE

“An indictment was unsealed today in federal court in Central Islip charging Tameshwar Ammar, a medical doctor in Roslyn, New York, with writing prescriptions for oxycodone, a Schedule II controlled substance, without a legitimate medical purpose. Ammar was arrested this morning, and is scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon before United States Magistrate Judge Steven I. Locke.

Richard P. Donoghue, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and Ray Donovan, Special Agent-in-Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), New York Division, announced the indictment.” read here

BALTIMORE PIMP SENTENCED TO 20 YEARS IN FEDERAL PRISON AFTER BEING CONVICTED AT TRIAL OF CHARGES OF SEX TRAFFICKING OF A CHILD AND USING THE INTERNET TO PROMOTE A PROSTITUTION BUSINESS

“Baltimore, Maryland – U.S. District Judge Thomas E. Johnston today sentenced Ryan Russell Parks, a/k/a Dinero, age 26, of Baltimore, Maryland, to 240 months in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release, for two counts of sex trafficking of a minor and one count of using the Internet to promote a business enterprise involving prostitution.  A federal jury convicted Parks late on July 18, 2019, after a four-day trial.  As a result of his conviction, upon his release from prison, Parks will be required to register as a sex offender in the places where he resides, where he is an employee, and where he is a student, under the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA).

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur; Special Agent in Charge Jennifer C. Boone of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; and Colonel William M. Pallozzi, Superintendent of the Maryland State Police.” read here

AVENTURA TECHNOLOGIES, INC. AND ITS SENIOR MANAGEMENT CHARGED WITH FRAUD, MONEY LAUNDERING AND ILLEGAL IMPORTATION OF EQUIPMENT MANUFACTURED IN CHINA

The Long Island Company Supplied Chinese-Made Surveillance Equipment to U.S. Government and Private Customers While Falsely Claiming its Products Were “Made in U.S.A.”

“A criminal complaint was unsealed today in federal court in Brooklyn charging surveillance and security equipment company Aventura Technologies, Inc. (Aventura), located in Commack, New York, and seven current and former employees with selling Chinese-made equipment with known cybersecurity vulnerability to government and private customers while falsely representing that the equipment was made in the United States and concealing that the products were manufactured in the People’s Republic of China (PRC).  Aventura has generated more than $88 million in sales revenue since November 2010, and the charged scheme has been ongoing since 2006.

In addition to Aventura, the individual defendants charged in the complaint are Jack Cabasso, Aventura’s Managing Director and de facto owner and operator; Frances Cabasso, his wife and Aventura’s purported owner and Chief Executive Officer; senior executives Jonathan Lasker, Christine Lavonne Lazarus and Eduard Matulik; current employee Wayne Marino; and recently retired employee Alan Schwartz.” read here

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