Monmouth County, N.J., Doctor Admits Stealing $1.1 Million
NEWARK, N.J. – A pain management doctor with a practice based in Red Bank, N.J., admitted today that he embezzled more than $1.1 million from a medical practice, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.
Robert Muscio, 40, a resident of Colts Neck, N.J., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Stanley R. Chesler in Newark federal court to one count of committing mail fraud to embezzle those monies.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
Between 2007 and 2008, Muscio misused his position as medical director of a practice – with which he is no longer associated – to write checks on the practice’s bank account to pay his personal expenses. To conceal this misconduct from his partners, Muscio falsely described the payments as business expenses of the practice.
The mail fraud count to which Muscio pleaded guilty is punishable by a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for May 21, 2014.
U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Thomas O’Donnell, and the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Aaron T. Ford, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.
The government is represented by Senior Litigation Counsel Andrew Leven of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Health Care and Government Fraud Unit in Newark.
U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman reorganized the health care fraud practice at the New Jersey U.S. Attorney’s Office shortly after taking office, including creating a stand-alone Health Care and Government Fraud Unit to handle both criminal and civil investigations and prosecutions of health care fraud offenses. Since 2010, the office has recovered more than $520 million in health care fraud and government fraud settlements, judgments, fines, restitution and forfeiture under the False Claims Act, the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act and other statutes.
Defense counsel: Joseph J. Benedict Esq., New Brunswick, N.J.