AG Coffman Charges Pharmacist for Alleged Theft of Millions in Medicaid Funds
DENVER- Colorado Attorney General Cynthia H. Coffman today announced the filing of charges against George Sackey, owner of Havana Pharmacy and Alameda Pharmacy. Sackey was charged with one count of felony theft and one count of felony computer fraud after allegedly fraudulently billing Medicaid for over $4.4 million.
“Medicaid helps fund vital care for Colorado’s neediest community members,” said Attorney General Coffman. “When someone defrauds Medicaid they are stealing from Colorado tax-payers and taking money away from those who truly need the healthcare. My office will prosecute Medicaid fraud to the fullest extent of the law.”
Sackey allegedly created a specially branded pain cream the “Havana Pain Cream,” and provided physicians with pre-printed prescription forms to order this cream for their patients. Two of the primary ingredients for the cream were Ketoprofen and Lidocaine. Between 1/7/2014 and 2/6/2017 the Havana Pharmacy billed Medicaid for $2,435,070.66 in Ketoprofen tablets and $1,967,125.03 in Lidocaine Ointment. These amounts made Sackey’s pharmacies major outliers in Medicaid billing as larger pharmacy chains were averaging approximately $20,000 - $50,000 during the same time period.
Sackey is alleged to have billed Medicaid for Lidocaine ointment and Ketoprofen tablets to make the compounds, while actually using bulk powder form, significantly increasing his profit margin while allegedly defrauding the State of Colorado.
An arrest warrant was issued for Sackey, and he was taken into custody by federal law enforcement officers at Denver International Airport while preparing to board an international flight.
The Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit is dedicated to the investigation and prosecution of Medicaid provider fraud. The unit also investigates and prosecutes abuse of residents in Medicaid-funded nursing homes and state facilities. To report suspected Medicaid fraud or abuse, contact the AG’s Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or (720) 508-6696.
The filing of criminal charges is merely a formal accusation that an individual committed a crime. Every defendant should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.
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Colorado Attorney General’s Office
DateFebruary 16th, 2017