A 79-year-old New Jersey doctor is facing jail time after a jury found him guilty on bribery charges for his role in a $200 million health fraud scheme.
A federal jury convicted Bernard Greenspan of accepting kickbacks, and he faces up to 20 years in prison when he is sentenced on June 20, according to an announcement from the Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Jersey.
Unlike dozens of others charged as part of a long-running fraud scheme run by a New Jersey blood testing laboratory, Greenspan chose to go to trial even though a guilty verdict would likely mean spending the rest of his life in prison. Jurors deliberated for a little more than four hours this week before they found the family practice doctor guilty on all 10 counts including conspiracy, wire fraud and violating federal anti-kickback laws.
More than two dozen doctors have pleaded guilty in the fraud scheme operated by the blood-testing company Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services in New Jersey. Greenspan was found guilty of accepting $200,000 in illegal bribes from the company in exchange for sending patients’ blood samples to the laboratory. The prosecution said Greenspan received inflated rental payments for the lab company to use space in his office, bogus consulting fees and even a job at the lab for his alleged mistress..
“We rightfully expect doctors to make their medical decisions based solely on what’s in the best interest of a patient,” U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman said in the announcement. “Whether they are dealing with a routine procedure or grappling with a potentially serious condition, patients should never have to worry that a doctor has violated that trust for personal greed. As we showed at trial—and the jury agreed—Greenspan abused his position and broke a wide range of federal laws when he accepted cash bribes and other illicit services in return for blood test referrals to BLS.”
During the trial, Greenspan testified that he thought the work he had done was legal and said he was duped by David Nicoll, who was president of the now-defunct laboratory company, according to NorthJersey.com. Nicoll, who has pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing, testified against Greenspan.Federal authorities in New Jersey said the Biodiagnostic case was the largest fraud of its kind ever uncovered and estimated Medicare was defrauded of tens of millions of dollars,