Indian-American physician pleads guilty to health care fraud

An Indian-American physician in the US has pleaded guilty to the charges of unlawfully dispensing controlled substances and health care fraud.

The 111-count indictment filed in April 2014 charged 63-year-old Pawankumar Jain, whose license has been revoked, with 61 counts of unlawfully dispensing controlled substances and 50 counts of healthcare fraud.

The indictment alleged that Jain committed the offences between April 2009 and June 2010, in Dona Ana County, New Mexico.

He was also charged with unlawfully dispensing prescription painkillers to patients outside the usual course of medical practice and without a legitimate medical purpose.

During that time, he was a licensed physician with a neurology subspecialty and also operated a pain management medical practice in Las Cruces.

Jain has been in federal custody since April 2014, and remains detained pending his sentencing hearing, which is yet to be scheduled.

Under the terms of his plea agreement, Jain will be sentenced to a prison term within the range of 42 to 108 months followed by a term of supervised release to be determined by the court.