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Calif. judge dismisses medical fraud charges


A Southern California judge dismissed fraud charges in an alleged $100 million compound cream scam at Landmark Medical Management, which prescribed products to injured workers in an alleged kickback scheme.

Records from the Orange County Superior Court website show charges against Kareem Ahmed, chiropractor Andrew Robert Jarminski and pharmacist Michael Rudolph were dismissed after a preliminary hearing Monday. The case docket doesn’t include additional information.

The Orange County District Attorney’s Office filed the charges in May 2016 after an appellate court earlier that year threw out all but one count in the original case against Mr. Ahmed saying prosecutors charged more than the grand jury alleged.

Allegations in the amended complaint were similar to those in the 2014 indictment.

Prosecutors alleged Mr. Ahmed formulated compound creams based on the profitability of their ingredients rather than a patient’s medical needs. They said he charged carriers up to 50 times more than what he paid for medications and that he paid kickbacks to doctors for each compound cream they prescribed to injured workers.

The amended complaint alleges Mr. Rudolph, who owns Tustin Community Pharmacy, entered into an agreement with Mr. Ahmed to manufacture and distribute compound creams to injured workers. The complaint alleges Mr. Rudolph received more than $1 million for making and distributing drugs to injured workers.

Mr. Jarminski allegedly received more than $1.9 million from 2010 to 2013 for prescribing two compound creams to each work comp patient, regardless of medical necessity.

The complaint also charged all three with involuntary manslaughter for the Feb. 3, 2012, death of Andrew Gallegos, an infant who died after ingesting pain cream allegedly sent to his mother to treat a work-related knee injury.