Dentist sent to prison for role in $16.6M medical device fraud scheme — 9 details

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A former Dentist in South Dakota was sentenced to 12 years in prison for fraudulently marketing and selling medical devices, The Jamestown Sun reports.

Here are nine details.

1. Prosecutors said 83-year-old Robert "Larry" Lytle of Rapid City, S.D., was the organizer of a group that sold light-emitting QLaser devices to mostly elderly people, claiming they could cure a range of diseases including cancer, diabetes and heart disease.

2. Mr. Lytle and two others were sentenced April 20. They marketed QLaser devices for at-home use and designed product labeling to create the false impression that the devices' safety and effectiveness was scientifically proven.

3. The three individuals admitted to collecting about $16.6 million in the scheme.

4. Potential QLaser customers were told Mr. Lytle was a retired dentist and medical laser expert, when in reality he'd had his license to practice dentistry permanently revoked for engaging in fraud and material deception.

5. In January, Mr. Lytle pleaded guilty to one count of criminal contempt and one count of conspiracy to introduce misbranded medical devices into interstate commerce with the intent to defraud. He admitted to entering into an agreement to sell medical devices with false and misleading labels with intent to defraud consumers beginning in 2005.

6. Mr. Lytle also admitted he continued engaging in fraud after a federal court issued a series of injunctions in 2015, which ordered Mr. Lytle and the others to cease sales and refund all QLaser purchases.

Court documents said Mr. Lytle instead sent collection letters to QLaser buyers, smuggled hundreds of devices out of state to prevent them from being seized and continued receiving income from QLaser sales. The documents also said he made false statements to the court and FDA investigators.

7. Mr. Lytle has paid $637,000 and turned over gold and silver worth thousands of dollars to go toward restitution. U.S. District Judge Roberto Lange will issue a final restitution order within 90 days.

8. The judge sentenced Ronald D. Weir Jr. of Sioux Falls, S.D., to two years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and Canadian resident Irina Kossovskaia to 15 months in prison, followed by two years of supervised release.

9. The case was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

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