- Srinivasa Raju, 51, of Haskell, New Jersey, worked with other pharmacy personnel who steered numerous, high-value prescriptions to Morristown pharmacy where he worked.
An Indian American pharmacy employee has admitted to conspiring to offer and pay bribes and kickbacks in exchange for having prescriptions steered into his place of work. Last month, Srinivasa Raju, 51, of Haskell, New Jersey, pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Michael A. Shipp “to an information charging him with conspiring to violate the federal anti-kickback statute,” according to the Department of Justice.
Raju’s responsibilities at the Morris County pharmacy included “coordinating prescription deliveries and soliciting business,” the DoJ said.
Citing documents filed in the case, and statements made in court, the DoJ said that from January 2019 through February 2021, Raju worked with other pharmacy personnel to pay kickbacks and bribes to medical employees in two different doctors’ offices in Jersey City, New Jersey. In exchange, those employees steered numerous, high-value prescriptions to the pharmacy where Raju worked. He and his conspirators “paid as much as $150 for each prescription and used various tactics to conceal many of those bribe payments,” the DoJ said. “Overall, the pharmacy received over $2.4 million in Medicare reimbursement payments based on prescriptions derived from the kickback scheme.”
According to the DoJ, “the conspiracy charge is punishable by a maximum of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000, or twice the gross gain or loss derived from the offense, whichever is greater.” Raju’s sentencing is scheduled for May 16.
Previously, Magdalena Jimenez, 58, of Newark, pleaded guilty to a parallel bribery and kickback scheme involving the same pharmacy.