Imprisoned Painkiller Doc Faces Health Fraud Plea

A western Pennsylvania doctor serving more than 11 years in federal prison for writing phony painkiller prescriptions has been scheduled to plead guilty to health care fraud charges.

Forty-three-year-old Oliver Herndon was scheduled Monday to plead guilty before a federal judge in Pittsburgh. Defense attorney Roger Cox says the plea won't increase Herndon's current sentence.

Herndon, of McMurray, was sentenced two years ago after he was convicted of supplying patients with so many illegal painkillers that his arrest in 2011 caused the street price of the pills to double. Herndon was also ordered to repay $700,000 to two health insurance companies which paid for most of the drugs.

On Monday, he'll acknowledge submitting hospice care claims for patients who weren't terminally ill or medical claims for other services not provided.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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