Columns

Democrats Have Budding Jailbirds, Too -- Right, Kareem Ahmed?

By: Nancy Smith | Posted: June 25, 2014 3:55 AM
I Beg to Differ

Democrats would have you believe all the rich bad guys are Republicans. Don't believe it. Unless the Dems can prove Kareem Ahmed, king of the kickbacks, isn't one of theirs, they probably shouldn't throw another stone. 

Ahmed is president and CEO of a company called Landmark Medical Management. More to the point, he's a top Obama donor -- a whale -- who dropped $1 million to help re-elect the president in 2012.

Exactly what he wanted for such a big, friendly gift, given to the creator of Obamacare, is something we can only speculate.

Kareem Ahmed

Kareem Ahmed

Last week he and 15 of his associates were indicted by a California grand jury, and it's serious business. Ahmed, accused of masterminding a multimillion-dollar insurance kickback scheme, faces charges including conspiracy, insurance fraud, and, get this -- involuntary manslaughter. 

TPM broke the story Friday. But you know how it goes. When it's about big Democratic donors found to be scumbags, the mainstream media are always a little slow to turn on the lights. With a few exceptions -- notably the New York Daily News -- it's just now beginning to waft out of the West Coast woodwork.

In a nutshell -- for years Ahmed allegedly got rich by paying doctors tens of millions of dollars to prescribe a bogus topical cream to injured workers, then he used some of his profits to help elect Democrats to high national office.
TPM reporter Eric Lach writes, "The first of two sealed indictments accuses Ahmed of developing topical cream formulas 'based on the profitability of the ingredients,' and then giving doctors who treated workers' compensation patients illegal financial incentives to prescribe the creams."

The scheme apparently ran from 2009-2013 and also involved filing false claims with multiple insurance companies. It's a nine-count indictment we're talking about here.

Altogether, between June 15, 2010, and December 21, 2012, Ahmed allegedly paid physicians more than $25 million to dispense his creams.

The second indictment surrounds a child who allegedly died as a result of this shady and immoral kickback scheme -- although the details of what exactly happened to him or the manner in which he died are sketchy.

Lach writes, "The indictment provides few details on the involuntary manslaughter charge, alleging only that Ahmed, a pharmacist named Michael Rudolph, and a doctor named Andrew Jarminiski (who are both charged along with Ahmed in the first indictment) 'did unlawfully and without malice kill Andrew G. (a minor), a human being, in the commission of a lawful act which might produce death, in an unlawful manner and without due caution and circumspection.'"

Ahmed has written checks to at least two candidates in 2014 -- $5,200 to Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., and $2,600 to freshman Congresswoman Julia Brownley, D-Calif.

Only the National Republican Congressional Committee, through its Digital Press Secretary Andrew Clark, has raised a ruckus about this. As you might expect, none of the mainstreamers have yet.

“An indicted Democrat mega-donor is funneling his dirty campaign cash to Julia Brownley," said Clark. "If she wants to prove that this type of politics has no place in Southern California, then she should lead by example and return the donation immediately.”

I thought this story deserved an airing even in Florida, where Democrats routinely lament how right-leaning “millionaires and billionaires” are trying to “buy America.” And oh, how they denigrate the personalities involved as despicable characters.

Well, in Kareem Ahmed, we really do have a despicable character and he's as liberal as the day is long.

Is asking a pair of Democrats serving at the people's pleasure to return checks given to them by this particular wealthy donor -- a suspected scumbag under indictment -- an unreasonable request? I don't think it is.

Kareem Ahmed and Michelle Obama

Mega donor Kareem Ahmed and Michelle Obama in 2012, happier times


Reach Nancy Smith at nsmith@sunshinestatenews.com or at 228-282-2423.


Comments (10)

M
3:44PM JUL 1ST 2014
I've read many articles on this story and can't help but finally comment. It's easy to play the blame game utilizing politics, considering all of the political donations that were made by Kareem. However, as a former employee of 2 years, I can assure you that this whole thing stemmed out of 100% greed. Kareem wasn't in every politico's pocket until the insurance companies began to fight these outrageously priced medications. Mr Ahmed began first with California legislators, and once it was realized there were only so many changes he could make to keep his millions of dollars rolling in each month, he began reaching further. He had planned to take his business to other states; hence the reason he was giving "samples" to legislators in Washington. This was a very believable business.. And I feel like a fool to know now what I was involved in.

I'll also add that Mr Ahmed / Landmark and it's affiliated companies did not include Industrial Pharmacy Management. On top of that, there were other pharmacies/physicians that were prescribing the same medications to the same patient on the same day.. Sounds to me as if there's some more research to do with regards to more people involved than just those listed in the indictments. The insurance companies have every right to go after the ones currently indicted, however, this is just the tip of the iceberg with regards to fraud in the California work comp system.
M
3:50PM JUL 1ST 2014
Oh.. And for someone that knows they'll be exonerated, why shut down the company? All employees will be filing for unemployment benefits that "won't be contested." How awfully sweet of them!
Fraudster
3:13PM JUN 25TH 2014
Hopefully this will expose the shady WC attorneys who refer their ignorant injured workers to the most dangerous doctors possible. Jarminski is a major player in work comp. But he wouldn't be able to destroy peoples lives without the "ambulance chasing" attorneys. They're all in bed together, sucking the system dry.
OccupyWorkComp
3:13PM JUN 25TH 2014
This tragedy could've been avoided if . . .
1) . . . Priscilla Lujan didn't treat her work injury like a lottery ticket. She looks relatively young, but probably didn't mind staying home to take care of the baby while getting paid on "disability" for as long as possible. By the way, with the long list of injuries she's alleged/exaggerated, she still found time to become a new parent! Wow!
2) . . . the slimey attorney didn't refer all his clients to the worst of the worst doctors just to make a quick buck. Its obviously better for his bottom line if his clients become/appear totally disabled. What even happened to doing what's best for your client!?!
3) . . . the unethical and immoral work comp doctors didn't try to suck every last cent out of the system by prescribing overpriced and dangerous medications. Doctors in work comp only care about paying off their beach house mortagages. They don't care about all the drugees and invalids they're creating with their abusive medicine!

As an injured worker (who has an actual, real injury!), these leeches are ruining it for the rest of us. How can these people sleep at night?

It's sad that the only innocent person in this whole affair, the child, was the one that paid the ultimate price.
Mark
7:14AM JUN 25TH 2014
I'm just looking forward to Nancy Smith writing an article just like this but covering the Republicans equally. Ahmed is a crook, no doubt, and he seems to be a true "scumbag" as Nancy claims. However, I must point out that the State of Florida has a "scumbag" Governor in Rick Scott as evidenced in his earlier years years of refusing to answer questions(taking the fifth) during the trial involving one of his businesses. He also is now trying to convince people how he's raising funding of our educational system, but forgets that he originally took million away from education in his first year. Now, he's returning only parts of what he originally took.
Well, that's just one example of a crooked Republican. Your turn, Nancy!
Ron
8:49AM JUN 25TH 2014
Since when has taking the fifth been a crime? Now the ball is back in your court Mark!
Dean
11:02AM JUN 25TH 2014
Typically a person takes the 5th in order to not incriminate themselves. Doing so implies there is something criminal that the person does not want to admit to. Therefore, there is good reason to believe Gov. Scott was aware of and covering up some sort of criminal behavior. So if he is not involved in criminal behavior he was involved in covering up criminal behavior. Covering up a criminal act is in itself a crime. It is called being an accomplice. If there was no crime or criminal behavior why would he plead the 5th 75 times?
Frank
10:51AM JUN 25TH 2014
So you'd deny that the firm he was head of involved itself in the then largest fined Medicare fraud in history, correct . . . . .

Pathetic . . . .
The UnFrank
2:28PM JUN 25TH 2014
What really is pathetic here is you or anyone else trying to connect Ahmed and Rick Scott. Read the liberal Politifact again from June 11, 2010. Scott was never indicted. He wanted to fight the government on the charges but others in the company wanted to settle. He admitted there was fraud going on in HCA and took responsibility. You will want to believe he was deliberately defrauding because it's your job to deflect from Scott's record of an improved Florida economy in his first four years and from Charlie Crist's weak, shallow and quid pro quo style term in the pathetic four years before Scott. Nancy Smith should reproduce the Politifact report word for word to stop the Frank Lie-Creep.
Frank
12:43PM JUL 1ST 2014
Of course you must be right . . . . Scott never made his personal fortune while heading up a company engaged in massive Medicare fraud . . . . . . . . . how much of his fortune did he have to pay in fines . . . . . oh, that's right . . . . he didn't . . . . . .and about those Politifact "facts" of yours . . . . let's look at a couple of the most recent from Politifact, like maybe Feb. 25, 2014 - that Scott "oversaw the largest Medicare fraud in the nation’s history" - MOSTLY TRUE (only not fully true because it's since been surpassed) . . . . or Rick Scott "was deposed in lawsuits about his company, he took the Fifth 75 times" - MOSTLY TRUE . . . .

Now what about those GOP and Rick Scott statements about Medicare & Medicaid:

RICK SCOTT's:
"Seniors enrolled in Medicare Advantage are going to see an average premium increase between $50 and $90 per month" - MOSTLY FALSE

"We are seeing dramatic rate cuts" to Medicare that will affect seniors’ ability to keep their doctor, hospital and prevention services. - MOSTLY FALSE

Says a federal plan to expand Medicaid would cost Florida taxpayers $26 billion over 10 years. - FALSE

The Medicaid expansion is "going to cost Florida $1.9 billion a year." - FALSE

FL-GOP's:
That Charlie Crist's supports "cuts to the Medicare Advantage program." - FALSE

Perhaps you might just take an Emily Litella and claim "Oh, that's very different . . . . . . . . . Nevermind" . . . .

Pathetic . . . . .

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