Paramus man pleads guilty to cheating medical insurance companies
By Keldy Ortiz
November 25, 2019

A Paramus man who previously owned a pharmacy in West New York admitted in federal court to cheating medical insurance companies out of millions of dollars and bribing a psychiatrist, authorities said.

Eduard Shtindler, 36, pleaded guilty in federal court in Trenton to conspiracy to commit health care fraud and paying illegal bribes, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito said in a statement. Shtindler was arrested in August.

Empire Pharmacy, which opened in 2012 and was owned by Shtindler, had enticed doctors to use the business to get their medications by promising to “receive prior authorization approval more successfully than any other pharmacies,” federal prosecutors said. Shtindler then told Empire employees to falsify prior authorization forms for the “expensive specialty medication” used to treat certain conditions, such as psoriasis and hepatitis C.

Shtindler and his pharmacy received about $2 million in illegitimate reimbursement payments from medical insurance carriers, federal prosecutors said.

Shtindler was caught in a recorded phone call admitting to the practice of falsifying prior authorization, federal prosecutors said. In 2016, he gave an Empire employee a sealed bag with cash and told the employee to give the bribe money to the psychiatrist.

Between 2012 and early 2017, Shtindler bribed a psychiatrist in Hudson County in exchange for the doctor’s steering patients to fill prescriptions at Empire, prosecutors said. The psychiatrist was not named.

In August 2017, the FBI raided Shtindler’s business.

Shtindler is set to be sentenced in March. As part of his agreement, he will be ordered to pay between $1.5 million and $3.5 million.