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Pharmacist ordered to pay $1.9million

Australian Federal Police
Date published
December 2022

A Brisbane pharmacist charged with defrauding the Commonwealth's Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme has been ordered to pay $1.9million to the Commonwealth pursuant to section 116(1) of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (Cth). The debt will be paid from the sale of restrained assets, including property, shares and cryptocurrency. The pharmacist claimed PBS payments for pharmaceutical benefits which were not actually supplied to the eligible recipients.

Money from the liquidated assets will be paid into the Confiscated Assets Account, which is managed by the Australian Financial Security Authority on behalf of the Commonwealth. These funds can be distributed by the Attorney-General to benefit the community through crime prevention, intervention or diversion programs or other law enforcement initiatives across Australia.

Related countermeasures

Use declarations or acknowledgments to both communicate and confirm that a person understands their obligations and the consequences for non-compliance. The declaration could be written or verbal, and should encourage compliance and deter fraud.

Automatically match data with another internal or external source to obtain or verify relevant details or supporting evidence. This countermeasure is supported by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner's Guidelines on data matching in Australian government administration.

Audit logging is system-generated audit trails of staff, client or third-party interactions that help with fraud investigations.

 Investigate fraud in line with the Australian Government Investigation Standards (AGIS).

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