ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has accused six people and three corporations of stealing $16 million from Medicaid by paying HIV-infected patients not to fill prescriptions that were reimbursed by the public health program.
The indictment unsealed in a Bronx courtroom charges all the defendants with racketeering and grand larceny.
Prosecutors say ringleader 63-year-old Mujahid "Peter" Pervez operated 11 pharmacies in New York City and Long Island and 34-year-old physician assistant Richard Cedeno prescribed drugs, including highly addictive narcotics.
The indictment alleges that from 2009 to April 2012 they and four others defrauded Medicaid while victimizing hundreds of patients.
Five others have pleaded guilty.
Authorities say Pervez, convicted of Medicaid fraud in 1991, has fled to his native Pakistan. Cedeno was scheduled for arraignment later Wednesday. It wasn't initially known if he has a lawyer.
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