Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Feds Want $600,000 Seized from Area Doctor

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Feds Want $600,000 Seized from Area Doctor

Article excerpt

Federal prosecutors want a Westmoreland County doctor, who they say was illegally distributing narcotics for cash, to forfeit more than $600,000.

The U.S. attorney's office also intends to take Mamdouh El-Attrache's medical office at 20 East Main St., Mount Pleasant, according to a motion filed Thursday.

Dr. El-Attrache, 73, who ran a pain and addiction clinic, was charged in September with illegally dispensing hydrocodone, fentanyl, methadone and other narcotics to addicts for no medical purpose. Medicare and Medicaid paid for the prescriptions at pharmacies.

His bogus patients paid cash for office visits and prescriptions, according to the FBI. The money was collected by a co-conspirator at the end of each day for deposit into his bank account at Scottdale Bank & Trust.

Prosecutors said that when the amounts to be deposited reached more than $10,000, the co-conspirator would make deposits in amounts less than that total to avoid reporting requirements, a common tactic for money-launderers trying to hide illegal income. …

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