COMPOUNDING PHARMACY DEFENSE ATTORNEYS
ANTI-KICKBACK VIOLATIONS: A CRIMINAL PROSECUTION PRIORITY
In the past few years there has been a dramatic increase in the number of compounding pharmacies that are investigated and prosecuted, especially by the Federal Government. In addition to the general criminal statutes and specialized health care fraud statutes, the government often proceeds against compounding pharmacies under the federal “Anti-Kickback” Statute, 42 U.S.C. § 1320a-7b.
“PAYING” FOR PRESCRIPTIONS
The most common specific allegations against compounding pharmacies are unnecessary refills and paying doctors for prescriptions. Since “payment” is defined as “anything of value,” this allegation can be extremely broad and encompass conduct that you might not have thought would run afoul of the law. “Illegal remunerations” are defined to include those made “in kind” (things – not money) and can be indirect (e.g., things of value given to a family member or associate).
THE NIGHTMARE OF A SEARCH WARRANT
A lot of times, the first you will find out that you are under investigation for Anti-Kickback violations is when a federal law enforcement agency crashes your office with a search warrant. Several hours later, your office will be empty of records and, most likely, computers. It is during this time that the federal authorities will attempt to interview you and your employees.
YOU MUST GET A LAWYER INVOLVED IN THIS PROCESS
Do not speak with the federal authorities alone. Get a lawyer involved immediately. In most cases, that lawyer will either come directly to your office or call the agent who is in charge of the search over the phone and tell him or her you will not be speaking to them. A lawyer can also be retained to represent your employees and will do the same thing.
CONTACT OUR FEDERAL CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEYS TODAY
At Westfall Sellers, we have experience defending compounding pharmacy owners and their employees from federal prosecution. If your business has been searched or records seized, or if you have received a target letter to appear before a grand jury, contact us today, so we can start preparing your defense.