Ariz. Pharmacist Swallows Tough Pill; Fraudulent Billing of Insurers Among Allegations

November 19, 2004

A Bullhead City, Arizona pharmacist pled not guilty recently in Mohave County Superior Court to charges of fraud for allegedly diverting prescription drugs and fraudulently billing insurance companies.

The State Grand Jury recently indicted Howard Jones of Bullhead City on charges of Fraudulent Schemes and Artifices, Theft and Acquisition of a Narcotic Drug. Jones’ next court date is scheduled for Dec. 6 at 10 a.m. in Mohave County Superior Court.

The indictment alleges that while working as a pharmacist for Smith’s Food and Drug in Bullhead City, Arizona, Jones obtained and diverted drugs for his own use, and for the use of some customers. The indictment alleges he obtained narcotic and opiate drugs like Lortab, Lorcet, Norco, and Tylenol with Codeine. The indictment also alleges that Jones then billed various insurance companies for non-dispensed drugs. The total alleged loss is $291,201.26.

If convicted of all charges, Jones faces 33.75 years in prison.

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