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Saddle Brook Doctor, 78, Charged With Taking $200,000 In Bribes

Martin Luther King Jr. federal courthouse, Newark
Martin Luther King Jr. federal courthouse, Newark Photo Credit: CLIFFVIEW PILOT

SADDLE BROOK, N.J. -- A 78-year-old Saddle Brook family doctor was charged Tuesday with accepting $200,000 in bribes in exchange for test referrals.

A federal grand jury in Newark indicted Bernard Greenspan as part of what U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman said was "a long-running and elaborate scheme operated by Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services LLC (BLS), of Parsippany, its president and numerous associates."

A total of 39 people – 26 of them doctors – have pleaded guilty in connection with the bribery scheme, which its organizers have admitted involved millions of dollars in bribes and resulted in more than $100 million in payments to BLS from Medicare and various private insurance companies.

It is believed to be the largest number of medical professionals ever prosecuted in a bribery case, Fishman said. The investigation has recovered more than $11.5 million through forfeiture, he added.

The 10-count indictment sets out what Fishman called "an extremely lucrative pattern of soliciting and accepting illegal payments" for referrals to the lab, which produced roughly $3 million in business for BLS.

The indictment says Greenspan "periodically solicited, and received from the BLS employees and associates, monthly bribe payments in the form of sham rental, service agreement, and consultant payments; received the bribes between March 2006 and April 2013 from BLS employees and associates," Fishman said.

He also "solicited and received other bribes," including payment for holiday parties for himself and office staff, the U.S. attorney said.

BLS hired – at Greenspan’s specific request – a patient of Greenspan’s with whom he was having a sexual relationship.

Greenspan, who is the second physician indicted in connection with the BLS bribery scheme, is charged with a host of conspiracy, wire fraud and federal travel act offenses.

Brett Ostrager was indicted on Aug. 11, 2015 and pleaded guilty on Dec. 22, 2015.

Fishman credited special agents of the FBI, inspectors of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the IRS–Criminal Investigation and Scott J. Lampert, the special agent in charge of the inspector general's office of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joseph N. Minish and Danielle Alfonzo Walsman, and Jacob T. Elberg, chief of Fishman's Health Care and Government Fraud Unit in Newark, as well as Assistant U.S. Attorney Barbara Ward, acting chief of the office’s Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Unit.

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