Dentist who allegedly faked anesthesia credentials to avoid jail

Dentists

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A Phoenix dentist who was accused of using false credentials to obtain an anesthesia permit has pleaded guilty to multiple felony charges, ABC15 reports.

Pankaj Goyal, DDS, pleaded guilty May 2 to three felony charges of criminal possession of a forgery device. Per the plea agreement, Dr. Goyal faces two years of probation, 750 hours of community restitution and $30,000 in fees and fines.

Dr. Goyal may also have to pay up to $2 million for economic losses to his victims or their insurance companies. His sentencing is slated for June 17.

An investigation by ABC15 found that Dr. Goyal used various fake degrees and forged signatures to receive a 1301 General Anesthesia Permit from the dental board. This is the state's highest level of anesthesia certificate, allowing dentists to administer general anesthesia.

Documents suggest that Dr. Goyal used a basic template in Microsoft Work to forge his residency degree, reports ABC15.

The Arizona Board of Dental Examiners is also under fire after allegations surfaced that the board knew about Dr. Goyal's credentials. The dental board's director Elaine Hugunin abruptly retired after Dr. Goyal's arrest.

Dr. Goyal has since forfeited his general anesthesia permit.

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