Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – A former radiologist at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center waived indictment and pleaded guilty in federal court to charges of unlawfully distributing controlled substances and health care fraud, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today.
Marios D. Papachristou, 43, of Allison Park, PA, pleaded guilty to two counts before United States District Judge Arthur J. Schwab.
In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that Papachristou conspired to create and submit unlawful prescriptions for Vicodin, and then unlawfully dispensed those controlled substances to other persons not specifically named in the Indictment. Papachristou also committed health care fraud for allegedly submitting fraudulent claims to UPMC Health Plan, for payments to cover the costs of the unlawfully prescribed Vicodin.
“Today’s guilty plea marks the first conviction in a case investigated by the Western Pennsylvania Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit, a Department of Justice initiative that uses data to target and prosecute individuals that commit opioid-related health care fraud,” stated U.S. Attorney Brady. “The data we are receiving provides important information about prescription opioids, prescribers and pharmacies that is being used to start or strengthen our investigations.”
Judge Schwab scheduled sentencing for October 10, 2018, at 10 a.m. The law provides a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a fine of $1,000,000 for unlawfully dispensing Schedule II controlled substances; and a maximum sentence of 10 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 for health care fraud.
The full press release is available at justice.gov.