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Indian-origin doctor gets 71 months prison in US for health insurance fraud

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Houston: An Indian-origin doctor has been sentenced to 71 months in a federal prison and ordered to repay over $2.2 million for health insurance fraud, the Federal Bureau of investigation announced Friday.

Dipak Desai, 65, who ran an endoscopy centre, overcharged the US health insurance systems for senior citizens and for the poor as well as private health insurers for providing anesthesia services, according to Daniel G. Bogden the Nevada federal prosecutor.

The Las Vegas doctor, who had pleaded guilty to conspiracy and health care fraud, was sentenced by federal Judge Larry R. Hicks. Desai.

“Dr. Desai intentionally defrauded the federal health care system for his own personal enrichment,” Bogden said. “We are hopeful this closes a long and sordid chapter of harm caused to the people and businesses of Nevada.”

An FBI press release said that Desai and his endoscopy company’s chief operating officer Tonya Rushing “imposed intense pressure on the endoscopy center employees to schedule and treat as many patients as possible in a day, and instructed the nurse anesthetists to overstate in their records the amount of time they spent on the anesthesia procedures.”

Rushing was earlier sentenced to a year in jail for her role in the scam.

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US, Britain Step Up In Order to Tackle Female Genital Mutilation

The mutilation of girls’ external genitals for non-medical reasons is practiced across Africa, the Middle East and Asia. It also affects immigrant communities in Europe and the U.S.

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Female Genital Mutilation
A badge reads "The power of labor against FGM" is seen on a volunteer during a conference on International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in Cairo, Egypt, Feb. 6, 2018. (VOA)

Authorities in the U.S. and Britain are stepping up cooperation to tackle female genital mutilation, staging joint operations at airports in London, New York and elsewhere to raise awareness of an issue that affects millions of girls and women worldwide.

Police and border security agencies on both sides of the Atlantic have signed a new agreement to share intelligence about when and where victims may be taken for the procedure, known as FGM, and help identify perpetrators.

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In the past week, officials also targeted travel hubs including Heathrow, JKF airport and Eurostar stations, approaching people traveling from countries where the practice is common and encouraging them to report any concerns.

The mutilation of girls’ external genitals for non-medical reasons is practiced across Africa, the Middle East and Asia. It also affects immigrant communities in Europe and the U.S. (VOA)

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