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Illinois doctor accused of health care fraud

Doctors have very difficult jobs. They spend years of their lives training to become a doctor, often acquiring hundreds of thousands of dollars in student loan debt. When they actually become a doctor, they have patients who pressure them for prescription drugs they may not even need and work long hours in order to ensure that their patients receive the best possible medical care available. Unfortunately for one doctor in Illinois, he has now been charged with health care fraud as a result of a federal investigation against him.

Authorities claim that the doctor's arrest came after a lengthy investigation. Documents accuse the doctor of prescribing oxycodone to an undercover agent posing as a patient. Allegedly, the doctor never personally saw the agent; the agent, posing as a patient, was instead seen by unqualified representatives of the doctor.

Additionally, authorities claim that the doctor billed Medicare for services performed on behalf of the same undercover agent that were never actually received. At this time, it is unclear what sparked the investigation against the doctor or what was uncovered as a result of a recent search of his house and office. Many of the details available about the investigation and subsequent arrest come from a release issued by the U.S. Attorney's office.

The man now faces a charge of health care fraud as well as a charge related to illegally dispensing oxycodone. If found guilty of the charges against him, the Illinois doctor could face up to 30 years in prison. However, in order for federal prosecutors to obtain a guilty conviction, they will have to provide enough evidence to prove his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, an often difficult burden of proof to meet.

Source: Chicago Tribune, Bolingbrook doctor arrested, Geoff Ziezulewicz, Feb. 20, 2014

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