May 20, 2011: Five Doctors Convicted for Participation in a Honest Services Fraud Conspiracy
SAN JUAN, P.R. – Yesterday evening, after a three-month trial before U.S. District Court Judge Carmen C. Cerezo, a jury found (5) physicians guilty of various offenses in connection with the Federal investigation of the Board of Medical Examiners of Puerto Rico, announced United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez. A sixth defendant, Gilberto Modesto was acquitted.
· Defendant Geraldo Castro was found guilty of Mail Fraud and Aggravated Identity Theft.
· Defendant Cesar Berroa was convicted of Conspiracy to Commit Honest Services Mail Fraud, Mail Fraud and Aggravated Identity Theft.
· Defendant Raysa Pacheco was convicted of Conspiracy to Commit Honest Services Mail Fraud.
· Defendant Julio Castro was convicted of Conspiracy to Commit Honest Services Mail Fraud and Mail Fraud.
· Defendant Glenda Dávila was convicted of Conspiracy to Commit Honest Services Mail Fraud.
“These defendants obtained false passing results in their medical Board tests in order to fraudulently obtain a license to practice medicine in Puerto Rico. These fraudulent licenses made it appear as if they were qualified to provide medical attention to patients who needed their services,” said U.S. Attorney Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez. “The defendants fraudulently practiced medicine in complete disregard of their victims’ health. Today’s guilty verdicts mark an important step in our efforts to hold those involved in this fraudulent scheme accountable for their actions.”
The investigation was conducted by the Food and Drug Administration Office of Criminal Investigations, and the case was prosecuted by Criminal Chief - Assistant United States Attorney José Ruiz-Santiago and Assistant United States Attorney Julia Díaz-Rex. No sentencing date has not been scheduled by the Court. The defendants face maximum penalties of imprisonment of five (5) years for the Honest Services Mail Fraud Conspiracy; 20 years for the Mail Fraud; and consecutive imprisonment terms of two (2) years for Aggravated Identity Theft.
Two of the defendants, Geraldo Castro-Betances and César Berroa were detained pending sentence. The remaining defendants were allowed to continue on bond with additional conditions of release pending sentencing.