Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Lafayette, Louisiana, cardiologist convicted on 51 counts of health-care fraud

"A Lafayette, Louisiana, cardiologist faces up to 10 years in federal prison after being convicted Tuesday evening of performing unnecessary procedures on dozens of patients. A federal jury found Dr. Mehmood Patel guilty of 51 counts of health-care fraud and acquitted him of 40 other counts after nearly two weeks of deliberations. Patel's attorney, Michael Small, said he intends to appeal the case to the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. "We're confident about our appeal," Small said, declining to elaborate on which grounds he would file the appeal. "We're obviously disappointed." Patel made no comment as he exited the courthouse, after U.S. District Judge Tucker Melancon agreed to allow him to remain free on bail prior to sentencing. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kelly Uebinger had requested that Patel be jailed immediately, arguing that the physician was a flight risk because of his wealth and connections to his native country of India" - Gannett Louisiana Online Network

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