8 pharmacy owners, marketers charged in $9.1M kickback scheme

Eight pharmacy owners and marketers were charged in an alleged $9.1 million kickback scheme, according to the U.S. Justice Department.

The indictment claims from May 2014 to September 2016, the eight men engaged in a scheme to pay kickbacks and bribes to its marketers after physicians prescribed compounded drugs covered by TRICARE. The scheme involved illegal kickbacks on about $92 million in compounded drug claims.

Fort Worth, Texas, residents Richard Hall, Scott Schuster, Dustin Rall, George Lock Paret and Michael Ranelle, as well as John Le, of Dallas; Quintan Cockerell, of Manhattan Beach, Calif.; and Turner Luke Zeutzius, of Horseshoe Bay, Texas, were each charged with conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and pay and receive kickbacks.  

As a result of the scheme, Mr. Zeutzius was paid about  $4.4 million, Mr. Cockerell was paid about $2.1 million, and Mr. Ranelle was paid about  $2.6 million in illegal kickbacks, for a total of $9.1 million, according to the indictment.

Mr. Hall, Mr. Schuster and Mr. Rall owned RXpress Pharmacy and Xpress Compounding in Fort Worth. The indictment claims the two companies operated at the same address and had the same employees. Allegedly, the two companies used a call center to handle prescriptions based on whether they were covered by federal or private insurance. According to the indictment, the companies paid the marketers different commissions based on whether the claim was made through private or federal insurance.

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