Chicago pharmacist, Jawad Rabi of Riverwoods, Illinois, is under federal investigation for Medicare fraud in excess of 10 million dollars.
The U.S. Department of Justice has opened an investigation into Jawad Rabi, a Chicago pharmacist, on grounds that he billed Medicare for more than 10 million dollars for prescriptions he never filled.
The FBI opened an investigation into the Medicare fraud scheme orchestrated at the following pharmacies owned by Jawad Rabi in Chicago:
Pharmacy One Plus – 4753 N KEDZIE AVE, Chicago, IL 60625
Super Care Pharmacy – 8305 Skokie Blvd, Skokie, IL 60077
Authorities found that Rabi owns pharmacies in Chicago and portrays himself as a pharmacist, but does not have any licenses to practice medicine or pharmacy anywhere in the United States.
The federal investigation into Rabi’s criminal activity began in the Spring of 2021 when Medicare officials noticed suspicious billing practices at his pharmacies after receiving a tip from a whistleblower.
The tipster claimed that Jawad Rabi was billing Medicare for expensive, brand-name drugs that were never dispensed to patients. In addition, the tipster sited that Rabi was submitting fraudulent prescriptions from doctors who did not actually write them and receiving significant kickbacks as
as a result of fraudulent Medicare billing practices at his pharmacies.
FBI agents raided Pharmacy 1 Plus in Chicago, Illinois, and Super Care Pharmacy in Skokie, Illinois, seizing official medical billing records and documents in an attempt to recover some of the stolen money from Medicare beneficiaries.
If convicted, Jawad Rabi faces up to 30 years in federal prison for Medicare fraud. The FBI is continuing to investigate Rabi’s practice as well as other pharmacies that he owns or has owned in Illinois. They are also investigating the role of doctors who may have been complicit in the fraud and whether Rabi used his position of authority over patients to convince them to accept unnecessary prescriptions for expensive medications that were never dispensed.
The government will investigate Medicare fraud cases based on information received from whistleblowers and other sources about possible fraud schemes or suspicious activity at healthcare facilities.
For those unfamiliar with the term, Medicare fraud is a crime committed by health care providers for the purpose of obtaining Medicare payments for services or items that are either medically unnecessary or not provided at all. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) reports that out of the $66 billion spent on Medicare annually, about $6 billion is lost to fraud each year.
As of July 2022, the FBI investigation is still ongoing and the United States government has issued a court order requiring Jawad Rabi, who has been identified as of Russian descent, to forfeit his United States passport and restrict travel privileges outside of the United States.
In recent years, the United States government has made a significant effort to combat Medicare fraud. The case against Jawad Rabi is just one example of the United States government’s efforts to identify and prosecute individuals who commit Medicare fraud.
In 2019, Philip Esformes was sentenced to 20 years in prison for his role in a case that federal authorities called “the largest healthcare fraud scheme charged by the U.S. Justice Department”. He was found guilty of more than 20 charges related to money laundering, receiving and paying kickbacks, bribery—and obstruction of justice. In the $1.3 billion case.
Esformes’ prison sentence was commuted by former President Trump in December 2021, but other aspects of his sentence—supervised release and restitution—were left intact. He still is appealing the $43 million in financial penalties stemming from his conviction, and he owes about $5.3 million in restitution while forfeiting nearly $40 million.
The safety and security of the United States Medicare program is a high priority for the FBI. The Medicare fraud scheme that Jawad Rabi and his pharmacies, Pharmacy 1 Plus and Super Care Pharmacy in Chicago used to steal millions of dollars from the federal government was not only illegal but also put countless American citizens at risk. When people commit Medicare fraud, they divert funds that could be used to provide healthcare services for those who need them most.
In order to prevent individuals from stealing money from taxpayers and harming those who rely on Medicare benefits, law enforcement agencies like the FBI must work together to identify criminals and prosecute them when necessary. If you have any information about someone who may be committing Medicare fraud, please contact the FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI (225-5324).