Doctor who stole $100M from Medicare could get 30-plus years

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) A politically prominent Florida eye doctor could get more than 30 years in prison for stealing $100 million in one of history's largest Medicare frauds.

A sentencing hearing for Dr. Salomon Melgen resumes Wednesday after a four-week hiatus. Melgen was convicted last April of 67 crimes including health care fraud, submitting false claims and falsifying records.

U.S. District Judge Kenneth Marra could give the 63-year-old Melgen a life sentence. Prosecutors are asking for 30 years. Melgen's attorneys want no more than 10.

Prosecutors said Melgen was the nation's highest-paid Medicare provider for five straight years. Melgen convinced many elderly patients to undergo often painful tests and treatments they didn't need for diseases they didn't have.

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In a separate case, Melgen is accused of bribing New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez.