21 Jul 2009

Pharmacist given home detention for DHB swindle

9:46 am on 21 July 2009

A pharmacist has been fined $25,000 and sentenced to nine months home detention for swindling more than $140,000 from the Wairarapa District Health Board.

Between February 2002 and October 2005, Ithiel Satya lodged 5993 claims with the DHB for prescription medicines that were never dispensed.

Repeat prescriptions were filled without patients asking for them - and, in some cases, to dead patients.

The unclaimed medicines were then returned to the pharmacy's stocks.

Judge Tuohy told the Wellington District Court on Monday that Satya made no direct financial gain but was motivated by indirect professional and financial advantage in the longer term.

The sentencing follows that of Michael Swann and Kerry Harford, who were jailed in March for defrauding the Otago District Health Board of almost $17 million over six years.