OWNER OF CALIFORNIA PHARMACY AND MEDICAL MARKETER SENTENCED FOR ROLE IN HEALTH CARE FRAUD SCHEME
Leslie Ezidore, a resident of Los Angeles, California, and owner of the now-defunct Irvine Wellness Pharmacy, was sentenced on July 24, 2023, in U.S. District Court, Central District of California, to 6 years in prison, 3 years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay restitution of $12,715,679, including $26,962 to Amtrak, for Health Care Fraud and Illegal Remunerations in Connection with Federal Health Care Programs.
Alexander Semenik, a medical marketer based in Las Vegas, Nevada, was previously sentenced on May 9, 2023, in U.S. District Court, for the Central District of California, to 3 years in prison, 2 years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay joint restitution of $1,721,644 for Illegal Remunerations in Connection with Federal Health Care Programs.
Our investigation found that as part of the health care fraud scheme, beneficiaries were solicited to provide their insurance information to a pharmacist for medications they did not seek or need. Ezidore and other co-conspirators paid kickbacks to marketers who provided unnecessary prescriptions to Irvine Wellness. Semenik was paid kickbacks for patient referrals he made to fill unnecessary prescriptions at the pharmacy. As a result of the scheme, Amtrak’s health care plan was billed $32,489 of which $26,962 was paid, and Tricare, the U.S. military’s health care plan, paid $12,264,685 on the fraudulently submitted claims. A codefendant in this case, Sandy Nguyen, was the pharmacist-in-charge of Irvine Wellness Pharmacy and was previously sentenced in this case.