Ex-Doctor's Girlfriend Sentenced in Scheme to Illegally Distribute Oxycodone and Defraud Medicare and Medicaid

Date: 
Monday, September 14, 2020
Office Affiliation: 

From the U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Pennsylvania:

PITTSBURGH – The girlfriend of a former Pennsylvania-licensed physician has been sentenced in federal court to a total of 63 months’ imprisonment on her conviction for conspiracy to illegally distribute oxycodone, conspiracy to commit health care fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and theft of public money, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today.

On September 14, 2019, Chief Judge Mark R. Hornak imposed the sentence on Marcia Ramsier Arthurs, age 62, formerly of Novato, California. Judge Hornak further ordered Arthurs to pay restitution to the Social Security Administration totaling $48,617.00, and to forfeit any interest she had in assets totaling approximately $1.2 million in U.S. currency, gold, silver, and real property.

According to information presented to the court, from March 26, 2015 to June 22, 2018, in the Western District of Pennsylvania and elsewhere, ex-doctor and co-defendant Paul Michael Hoover and Arthurs conspired to illegally distribute oxycodone, commit health care fraud, and launder drug proceeds. Approximately every three months, Hoover and Arthurs traveled from California to operate a pill mill in Coraopolis, Pennsylvania for one or two days, during which time, Hoover wrote individuals illegitimate oxycodone prescriptions for cash, assisted by Arthurs who wrote out the prescriptions, counted cash, and generally managed the pill mill. While back in California, Hoover and Arthurs received money orders for oxycodone prescriptions from individuals residing in the Pittsburgh area, and after receiving payment, mailed illegitimate prescriptions to the individuals. Hoover also conspired with Arthurs to commit health care fraud by signing preauthorization forms and submitting the forms to Medicare and Medicaid health plans, which then paid for the cost of the illegitimate prescriptions. Hoover and Arthurs also conspired to launder the proceeds from their drug distribution operation. Finally, from approximately October 2012 to July 2018, Arthurs knowingly converted to her own use, money belonging to the Social Security Administration in Social Security Title II and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits totaling $48,617.76. The defendant’s actions were without authority in that she made false representations to the Social Security Administration in order to wrongfully obtain these benefits, including reporting false information about her living and financial arrangements with Hoover

Hoovers was previously sentenced to a term of imprisonment of 136 months and restitution to Medicare, Medicaid, and the Social Security Administration totaling $406,760.75.

Assistant United States Attorneys Cindy K. Chung and Rachael L. Mamula prosecuted this case on behalf of the United States.

U.S. Attorney Brady commended the work by the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, Bureau of Narcotics, Drug Enforcement Administration, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigations, U.S. Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and Social Security Administration – Office of Inspector General, which conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Hoover.

The investigation leading to the filing of charges in these cases were conducted by the Western Pennsylvania Opioid Fraud and Abuse Detection Unit, which combines personnel and resources from the following agencies to combat the growing prescription opioid epidemic: Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General, Drug Enforcement Administration, Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigations, Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General – Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, U.S. Attorney’s Office – Criminal Division, Civil Division, and Asset Forfeiture Unit, Department of Veterans Affairs – Office of Inspector General, Food and Drug Administration – Office of Criminal Investigations, and the Pennsylvania Bureau of Licensing.