While typical consequences for False Claims Act violations include fines and career ramifications, other times criminal penalties can be pursued as well. In the case of a former employee of two Milwaukee medical clinics, he now faces nearly three years in prison and $1 million owed to Medicare and Medicaid.
Notably, this conviction is related to albeit not directly caused by a pharmacy fraud False Claims Act case where Cross Law Firm obtained recovery for both taxpayers and our clients.
The details of the case
According to WFRV, David Guerrero Jr. was an employee at two medical clinics in the Milwaukee area. Starting in 2016, Guerrero Jr. embarked on a scheme to order expensive creams for patients, often without their knowledge and consent, in exchange for kickbacks to line his pockets. Guerrero Jr. was not alone in this scheme and worked with his now co-defendant, Alexander Shister, who owned pharmacies and rewarded Guerrero Jr. for his referrals with illegal kickback payments.
This scheme went on for years and resulted in Medicare and Medicaid paying out $1 million to Shister’s pharmacies for the unnecessary creams. In return Guerrero Jr. received more than $100,000 in kickback payments. He also received more than $150,000 in kickback payments in another scheme with a medical laboratory, where he ordered unnecessary and often unapproved urine tests.
Conviction and sentencing
Guerrero Jr. pleaded guilty in August 2022. At his sentencing, the judge noted the serious nature of these crimes, including the violation of patients’ trust through the unauthorized access of their medical records for Guerrero Jr.’s own personal gain.
The FBI and the Office of the Inspector General for the Department of Health and Human Services both investigated the case. Shister, who previously pleaded guilty for his role, will be sentenced in January of 2023.
The government rewards whistleblowers for coming forward
If you suspect illegal activity in your workplace due to the company’s or an employee’s wrongful actions, it is critical to come forward as soon as possible. Certain protections are provided to employees who blow the whistle. You may also receive financial compensation in the form of a percentage of the award or settlement recovered by the government or recovered by your attorneys on behalf of the government.
Cross Law Firm has unique experience with False Claims Act cases. Our firm has recovered millions of dollars for our clients and taxpayers across the country. Call 414-616-3229, 414-224-0000, or contact us online to learn how we can assist you.