A physician with notable links to UFC legends and veterans has been charged in a money laundering scheme worth over $120 million.
As confirmed by the United States Department of Justice in a statement yesterday and initially reported by MMA Fighting, 65-year-old Francisco Patino has been charged with one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and wire fraud, in addition to one count of money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
The belief is that he unnecessarily distributed over two million units of controlled substances and injections that wound up resulting in patient harm, with his trial being set to begin on April 7.
In the statement, it is noted that the money laundering allegedly came through a health care scheme that he used to make himself seem like a fully qualified physician. He was the sponsor of a handful of athletes within the UFC, which is said to include a string of Hall of Famers as well as former title holders. While there are no names that have been included, fans are certainly going to be speculating about which UFC fighter were involved.
In addition to the previous claims he also ‘forced’ patients to take part in procedures in exchange for an opioid prescription, with the total defrauding relating to Medicare coming out to around $120 million.
He offered prescriptions for addictive substances such as fentanyl, oxycodone and oxymorphone for over a decade between 2008 and 2018, providing them to Medicare beneficiaries.
With the trial not even getting underway until early April it seems like a virtual guarantee that more stories are going to come out about this, and it’ll be interesting to see whether or not any names are introduced into the discussion regarding the UFC – or whether it’ll be kept confidential.
Either way, it’s an issue that isn’t going to be leaving the headlines anytime soon.
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 2/27/2020.