UPDATE: Dominoes continued to fall in the federal takedown of a $24.8 million kickback scheme when a Jersey City woman who worked for a local doctor took a plea deal.
Yudelka “Vicky” Ayala, 42, admitted conspiring with six co-defendants associated with the now-defunct Prime Aid Pharmacy in Union City to boost prescription sales through kickbacks and bribes to health care professionals in New Jersey and New York.
Prime Aid, which also had a location in the Bronx, processed expensive medications used to treat various conditions, including Hepatitis C, Crohn’s disease, and rheumatoid arthritis.
In order to generate more business, Alex Fleyshmakher – who worked at Prime Aid Union City and was an on-paper owner of Prime Aid Bronx – orchestrated the kickback scheme with his father and co-owner of Prime Aid Union City, Igor Fleyshmakher, Acting U.S. Attorney for New Jersey Rachael A. Honig said.
Ayala had “developed a long-standing and illegal kickback relationship” with the co-conspirators and became a key player in the scheme, Honig said.
From 2008 to 2017, she collected bribes that included included expensive meals, designer bags, and payments by cash, check and wire transfers, the U.S. attorney said.
These produced prescriptions filled at Prime Aid Union City that generated nearly $25 million in Medicare and Medicaid payments, Honig said.
Ayala pleaded guilty Tuesday via videoconference before U.S. District Judge Michael A. Shipp in Newark to conspiring to violate the federal anti-kickback statute. Schipp scheduled sentencing for Sept. 20.
Igor Fleyshmakher, of Holmdel, and Alex Fleyshmakher, of Morganville, each previously pleaded guilty for their roles in the scheme.
So did Eduard “Eddy” Shtindler of Paramus, who worked at Prime Aid Union City.
The Fleyshmakhers and Shtindler are all awaiting sentencing along with Ayala.
Charges are still pending against Samuel “Sam” Khaimov and Yana Shtindler, both of Glen Head, New York; and Ruben Sevumyants, of Marlboro.
Khaimov was a co-owner of Prime Aid Union City and the lead pharmacist of Prime Aid Bronx. His wife, Yana Shtindler, was Prime Aid Union City’s administrator. Sevumyants was Prime Aid Union City’s operations manager.
Honig credited special agents of the FBI, IRS-Criminal Investigation, and the Department of Health and Human Services-Office of Inspector General, as well as the New Jersey State Comptroller’s Office for the investigation.
Securing the plea Tuesday was Assistant U.S. Attorney Joshua L. Haber of Honig’s Health Care Fraud Unit in Newark.
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