USA vs Memar prosecutor: AAG Stephen C Lee

 

 

  My side of the story (USA vs Memar): 

I was convicted on 5/10/2017 of medical and information fraud.           I am innocent.

Implications of my Conviction:

Doctors will be simple technicians and will not be able to create personalized treatment plans outside of a box.

Doctors will be afraid of patients, since their insurance companies can use the full might of the US government against their clinical judgement.

Quality of healthcare will suffer.

Doctors will move away from practicing medicine or taking insurance.

Insurance companies will make more money because doctors are afraid of ordering some tests, performing some procedures, or prescribing some medications.

The Department of Justice might use cases such as mine to intimidate bigger fish, like departments in big hospitals. Those departments will have to settle, and settle big they will. This will be a major money making task on the part of the DOJ.(click here for further reading)

      

        Related Links:

The day the FBI searched the office

Dr. Memar’s side of the story

Outline of trial against Dr Memar

Motion to dismiss the conviction

Dear Patients, Dear Friends:         

My case is over, but I want to share the salient facts and my side of the story. This is a very technical case but the evidence is overwhelmingly in my support.

By now you probably have run across reporting of my conviction for medical fraud and subsequent sentencing. If you would like to know my side of the story, here goes.

In Jan 2013, Blue Cross/Blue Shield (BC/BS) fraud division representatives met with me at their office. In the room were a number of people, one being the medical director, who was an emergency room physician; others were an ex FBI agent, Mr.  They had abut 10 different charts, each with different problems. They felt all represented fraudulent activity. I remember a few. One case was of a lady that I had biopsied 5 lesions from. One of the 5 lesions was a skin cancer. BC/BS felt I did too many biopsies, therefore this is a fraudulent act. I explained how one was skin cancer, and some were rather ominous looking. In the USA, for every melanoma caught on biopsy, and average of 30 biopsies are done. Secondly, the more biopsies I do in one day the less I get paid, so there is no financial incentives to do multiple biopsies and in fact most dermatologists do not do more that 2 biopsies because their reimbursement goes down significantly. I tried explaining the fact that I caught a skin cancer early. This was sent to an outside lab and they diagnosed a skin cancer. It did not move her. I got frustrated with here apathy. I asked her how I should have treated this patient with 5 suspicious lesions. She said that I should have watched the 5 lesions over time and when the skin cancer started looking different, then biopsy it. She essentially wanted me to let the skin cancer grow. That is not how I was treated and that is not in the spirit of the Hippocratic oath doctors take. Next she pulled another chart, and this was of a man who came to me for severe itching that the University of Chicago dermatologists and other outside dermatologists had not been able to treat. He was covered in pin point bumps and scales with blood from scratching. He could not stop scratching throughout the first consultation, and complained of nights without sleep because of the intense itching. Mind you, there is literature showing people committing suicide due to intractable and intense itching. He had had a great workup at University of Chicago, but they had not been able to give him relief. I agreed with the diagnosis of the University of Chicago and gave him a further clinical diagnoses. I started him with light therapy that the patient said was never offered to him. This light therapy is a standard of care in the USA. He started to get better and told me that this is the first time anyone has given him relief from this itching. BC/BS medical director told me that I had provided too many treatments without seeing the patient. I denied that. I would see the patient often and have extensive conversations with him, but I never charged for that as office visits and my medical assistant scribes did not document the conversation and examinations. However, the next patient is what BC/BS chose to pass to the FBI as fraudulent. The story of this patient who triggered the FBI to comb through my practice; meet with many patients of mine and spook them; and ultimately find me guilty of fraud was the following patient:

In 2012 I biopsied a patient, and an outside lab diagnosed skin cancer. I treated the skin cancer and went on to treat her pre-cancers (actinic keratosis, AK) with and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) machine. The journals were getting filled with differet articles showing the effectiveness of this device without the downtime of other methods. By now we have over 5 scientific articles showing that IPL is effective in treating actinic keratosis. Rather cutting edge, a treatment for AKs that do not have much side effects……who would be against that? Since it is a heat producing device, it is presumed that it destroys the pre-cancers with heat. I thought I was helping this patient by treating her pre-cancers with IPL(In the treatment of AK, most options leave marks and the only treatment without marks is a cream called Solaraze gel®, which she was also given; however this is a very expensive medication and at the time insurances had difficulty paying for it). The BC/BS medical director felt that IPL is ineffective and that this patient did not have pre-cancers and I falsely diagnosed her with pre-cancers to make money on the two sessions of treatment (it is not logical to think a patient with cancer could not have pre cancers. They had not  had the patient examined by another dermatologist to make that claim. In my opinion and 15 years of experience, she had pre-cancers that needed treatment). I strongly denied their claim. In my final trial (2017), an ex-FBI agent present at that meeting with BC/BS (2012) testified that I denied using IPL on this patient for cosmetic reasons when confronted with the accusation. In short, this patient had pre-cancers and the use of IPL as a tool made no more money than using liquid nitrogen or any other tool to destroy the growths.

Six months later, the government raided my office with a search warrant. They never read me or my mother our right to an attorney and separated us in different rooms and interrogated us in pairs (good cop, bad cop). We were in utter shock. Mind you it was like 6:30am.

One FBI agent asked me what I had in the office to treat pre-cancers. I showed her a number of different tools I had to destroy pre-cancers, like freezing tools, Levulon®, IPL, Acid, electrocautery etc. In fact she would not let up until I showed her the Levulon® sticks and then she commented why I had so few. I replied that I order in small quantities, since they arrive quickly.  She was honest enough to write down a few (IPL, Levulon®, electrocautery, etc) in an official form and submitted it to both my lawyers and the government as a legal document.

In 2015, a Grand Jury was formed. I was told by my lawyer not to be present. No patient testified at this jury on such a patient-related case.  The same FBI agent took the stand and under oath stated that I only had IPL for destruction of pre-cancers at my office. This clearly contradicted her previous written statement and therefore amounts to  lying under-oath. Her testimony played a key role in the grand jury indicting for medicare and madicaid fraud. In June 18, 2015,  Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch got up on a podium in Washington, DC  and announced this collasal sweep and the discovery of alleged helthcare frauds across the nation. My name was included.  Obamacare was given extra funds for exactly such  actions. I and my family and friends were shocked and came to my emotional aid. I did not know what my charges were exactly. Thank God for family and true friends, including my patients. The fair weather friends flew. That I view as a good thing. It was a good house cleaning. The USA DOJ accused me of diagnosing people who did not have pre cancers (actinic keratosis/AK) and treat them with a tool called intense pulsed light (IPL) only to make money. I will show you how I lost money for each patient I treated precancers with IPL and for there to be fraud there needs to be motive to make money.

In the firs week of May 2017, I had a trial. I made an outline and what was said that clearly shows that I am not guilty:

Quick facts of what the government says I had done to 8 patients between 2007 and 2013:
Before we start: I, Dr. Memar, diagnosed 8 of the government’s patient witnesses with actinic keratosis (precancers).
I believed and continue to believe my diagnosis was correct. I treated them with a machine called IPL
because numerous publications proved that IPL alone treats actinic keratosis. I never used cosmetic treatments.
I used IPL as a destructive tool. I did not do anything wrong and I cared for my patients and prevented them
from getting skin cancer. The governments accusations are wrong.
The government presented 8 patients each with 2 counts of fraud (medical and information). They accused me
of knowingly misdiagnosing these patients with actinic keratosis and treating them with a machine called
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL). The 2 counts for 8 patients came to 16 counts. This case was a result of Blue Cross
and Blue Shield (BCBS) complaining about me. Remember that BCBS is the fourth largest lobbyist to the
United States government. Their word and what they want gets listened to. In this case, no physician ever
examined any of these 8 patients and confirmed that they did not have actinic keratosis. The 8
government-presented patients themselves do not remember the word actinic keratosis. What follows is the case outline:
1) How is the jury to decide this case?

a) For Dr. Memar to be innocent:
i) Dr. Memar needs to show that the evidence cannot support a finding of guilt beyond a                                 reasonabledoubt.
b) For Dr. Memar to be found guilty:
i) The government needs to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Dr Memar knew his                                    patients did not have pre-cancers (actinic keratosis) but diagnosed and treated them anyway.
c) In this outline, it will be shown how the government failed to honestly prove this, and only                         with “misstatements” managed to get the jury to convict Dr. Memar, and denied Dr Memar a                       fair trial.

d) The jury consisted of 12 members: all were Caucasian, their education level was from a GED                      to  one person with a Masters degree (I don’t know if it was an on line degree or what it was                          in), only half had been to a dermatologist and none had  an actinic keratosis (as an asside 1 in                      5 people in the USA have an actinic keratosis, so chances are at least 2 of the jurors actually                          had actinic keratosis but did not know of it)
2) The government’s case against Dr. Memar had 3 (three) prongs:
i) First was the thesis that Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) alone is not a viable treatment for actinic
keratosis
(1) 5 papers support this method
(2) Dr David Goldberg said the international medical community had unanimously recognized the
efficacy of IPL for treating actinic keratosis during the period of the treatments in question
(3) The government’s expert, Dr. Ross, had actually lauded the “excellent” results of treating AK
with IPL alone in a 2006 publication in Dermatologic Surgery
ii) Second, because IPL is ineffectual for AK, Dr. Memar could not have believed he was actually
treating that condition.
(1) Dr. Memar’s belief in IPL for treating AK–the evidence was clear that he even treated biopsyconfirmed
AK patients in this way, one of whom had actual skin cancer.
(2) Patients actually got better and some preferred the IPL to other techniques when they knew very
clearly that they had actinic keratosis.
(3) Five publications show the usefulness of IPL alone for actinic keratosis. Don’t come after me for
facts already established.
(a) This is like prosecuting someone for believing the world is round….to that I say prosecute
Galileo.
iii) Third, the patients did not actually have actinic keratosis. This implied that Dr Memar over
diagnosed actinic keratosis.
(1) Evidence showed that Dr. Memar’s patients had the classic symptoms of actinic keratosis, no
matter the inability of some of them to recall hearing those precise words in a conversation 5 –
10 years earlier.
(2) How do dermatologists normally inform their patients that they have actinic keratosis?
(a) Telling the patient they had spots that needed to be treated or removed sufficed. (Dr. Ross Tr.
566-67; Dr. Goldberg Tr. 894-95; Dr. Memar Tr. 1022)
(3) Dr. Memar’s office was decidedly modest in its diagnosis and treatment of actinic keratosis–the
opposite of what would be expected if there was a scheme to falsely diagnose and treat it.
(a) The evidence shows that from 2007 – 2013 (the time period of the indictment), Dr. Memar
had approximately 600 actinic keratosis patients and approximately 1,800 actual skin cancer
patients. (Dr. Memar Tr. 1088, 1091). Equally undisputed was Dr. Goldberg’s testimony that
you would expect between 10 and 30 times as many AK patients as actual skin cancer
patients, and hence that Dr. Memar had a very low number of AK patients. Indeed, Dr.
Goldberg would have expected there to have been 20,000 AK patients as opposed to his mere
600. (Dr. Goldberg Tr. 894). (Dr. Memar has as many as 30,000 patients at a time. (Dr.
Memar Tr. 1096)).
(b) Therefore Dr. Memar had much fewer actinic keratosis patients as would be expected. This
implies that great discretion was used By Dr. Memar in diagnosing actinic keratosis. He had
so few that when he diagnosed a person with actinic keratosis he was very confident in the
diagnosis.
3) The Governments witnesses
a) Ashley Davis, FBI agent (agent who interrogated me and misspoke at the grand jury)
i) This is the agent who made the misstatement in the grand jury. When she was presented with that
documented fact, she became silent and from my point of view, looked upset.
ii) Upon leaving the court, my mom said Ms Davis looked rather distraught and grabbed her purse in a
rapid jerking motion, as if she was upset, and stormed out of the court room.
b) Medical assistant 1
i) Former medical assistants Michelle Kline and Jennifer Gecas provided no competent evidence
whatsoever for the proposition that Dr. Memar’s IPL patients did not actually have actinic keratosis.
Neither recalled a single patient they had treated, their skin condition, or anything else. (Kline Tr.
240-42, 245-46; Gecas Tr. 324-26, 333). All they offered was hopelessly unparticularized testimony,
thereby disqualifying themselves as competent
(1) Ms. Gecas likewise professed her total ignorance of actinic keratosis to FBI Case Agent Ashley
Davis.
c) Medical assistant 2
i) Michelle Kline admitted not knowing what actinic keratosis and scaly plaques were, such that even
if she had remembered particular patients, her testimony as to whether they had either condition
would have been meaningless.
ii) Michelle Klein had praised Dr. Memar on a television show after leaving Dr. Memar’s office. Dr.
Memar’s lawyer asked Ms Klein under oath : when did you determine that Dr. Memar was acting
fraudulently? She answered: when the FBI showed up. Therefore, just the presence of the FBI and
their bully pulpit changed her opinion of Dr. Memar.
d) Medical assistant 3
i) 14 years with Memar
ii) She was adamant that each patient called by the government hadit, which she knew from seeing the
AK’s on their faces from 12 inches away as she administered IPL and before that when the patients
were initially examined in her presence.
iii) She was equally insistent that Dr. Memar had never falsified medical records or done anything
improper and never asked her to as to these or any other patients
iv) Had he done so, she would have found employment elsewhere and without difficulty given the offers
she received and rejected while working for Dr. Memar.
v) With all her experience treating AK, Ms. Guttierez was clear that if she had AK, she would choose
IPL alone as her treatment method.
vi) Testified without contradiction that Ms. Gordon’s (patient 8) AK’s were so pervasive that she
thought that some were actual skin cancer.
e) The Patients in the Indictment (8 patients, each with 2 counts of fraud, totaling 16 counts of Fraud.
i) Pt 1 (Kontos) counts 4 and 12
(1) Kontos not only had acne, but additionally “red, scaly bumps” “all over” (Kontos Tr. 698, 711)
that “itched” (at 711) and that were “different” from and not acne. (Kontos Tr. 709). As Dr. Ross
testified for the government, this was the classic presentation of actinic keratosis. (Dr. Ross Tr.
514). Dr. Memar prescribed a series of IPL treatments to avoid this “sun damage” (which actinic
keratosis is) turning into cancer. (Kontos Tr. 699-700, 711). The IPL’s worked, the AK’s
disappeared, and Ms. Kontos stopped getting the IPL treatments. (Kontos Tr. 705-708). When
the AK’s recurred, she got more IPL’s with the same successful results. (Kontos Tr. 711). She
described Dr. Memar as a “fantastic doctor” who “absolutely” “did everything on the up and up.”
(Kontos Tr. 711)
ii) Pt 2 (Siegel) counts 7 and 15
(1) The very patient I was called into BC/BS to discuss
(2) Memar focused on the surrounding area and saw lesions that shouldn’t be there for which he
ordered IPL treatments. (Siegel Tr. 475, 502). He told Ms. Siegel that left untreated, the lesions
could turn into squamous cell carcinoma. (Siegel Tr. 488).
(3) Siegel believed that Dr. Memar had saved her face, if not her life, and that he had done nothing
wrong in any of this, no matter what the government had told her.
(4) when the lesions returned in 2014, Ms. Siegel was treated with Solareez gel (Siegel Tr. 501), an
indisputable treatment for AK
iii) pt 3 (Combs) counts 1 and 9
(1) She insisted that she received IPL treatments for medical, not cosmetic purposes.
(2) She was worried about a significant sunburn she sustained on vacation and had a history of sun
damage and sun exposure naturally and through tanning salons that made her a prime candidate
for actinic keratosis.
(3) Thus, Dr. Memar gave her IPL for her “sun damage”–which actinic keratosis is, (Dr. Robinson
Tr. 67)–before it “turned into something worse.”
iv) pt 4 (McMullen) Counts 2 and 10
(1) The government’s chief evidence that Ms. McMullen did not have AK in March, 2009 was (1)
photographs of her with make-up on (McMullen Tr. 269-71, 277-78); (2) her current inability to
“remember one way or the other” being told a decade earlier that she had “AK” or “actinic
keratosis” (McMullen Tr. 271-72, 280), (3) and her inability to remember if she had scaly
plaques back then–a memory that could never have existed anyway since she didn’t know what
either actinic keratosis or scaly plaques are. (McMullen Tr. 279, 281). In fact, she did not
remember Dr. Memar himself and thus could not point him out in court. (McMullen Tr. 263).
(2) by her own description, redness, scarring , and sun spots, all of which Dr. Memar told her had to
be addressed
(3) She thought Dr. Memar was a good doctor (McMullen Tr. 281). And she would have trusted him
to get IPLs back in 2005 when she started with him, long before 2009 when he first ordered
them. He had thus refrained from giving her needless treatment for four years from which he
would have profited–a forbearance starkly at odds with the charged fraud
v) pt 5 (Robinson) count 5 and 13
(1) Memar diagnosed him with both Rosacea and actinic keratosis, which Dr. Goldberg testified
without contradiction can mimic each other and which commonly co-exist.
(2) said that Dr. Memar may have mentioned “AK”–it “sounds familiar.”
vi) pt 6 (Laurent) counts 6 and 14
(1) Laurent had been referred by Dr. Fabros to Dr. Memar for “spots on her face.” (Laurent Tr. 609).
She likewise had the prototypical history of AK, namely countless sunburns when she was young
in addition to buying tanning bed packages by the dozen. (Laurent Tr. 631). Dr. Memar said the
spots could be “precancerous” and recommended IPL treatment (Laurent Tr. 609-610, 631). The
treatment worked, and the spots sloughed off. (Laurent Tr. 633-34). Ms. Laurent believed Dr.
Memar to be a good doctor and was fond of him. (Laurent Tr. 630).
(2) She denied having scaly skin but a biopsy of her skin revealed lichenoid keratosis, which proved
that she had scaly skin. “Keratosis,”
(3) Memar’s letter to Dr. Fabros immediately after the referral, conveying his diagnosis of actinic
keratosis and intended IPL treatment further supported Dr. Memar and cut against the
government’s version.
vii) pt 7 (Jaroch) counts 3 and 11
(1) Jaroch remembered virtually nothing Dr. Memar told her 10 years ago, although he may have
mentioned “AK.”
(2) Was unable to identify Dr. Memar in court.
(3) Indeed, whatever “illicit” profit Dr. Memar made on the 10 or so IPL treatments was nullified by
the steep Botox discounts he gave her–a wash that wholly defeated the purpose of any alleged
crime.
viii) pt 8 (Gordon) counts 8 and 16
(1) Another dermatologist who examined this patient and testified said that this patient had a “a
history of blistering sunburns and tanning, “ making her a “classic candidate for actinic
keratosis”
(2) The patient denied having “lesions,” but my office sent her three bills explicitly referring to
“destruction of lesions” and the other dermatologist who examined her said that the patient had
lesions associated with pink bumps.
(3) This patient denied having scaly skin (one presentation of actinic keratosis), however the other
dermatologist described her as having “dry, scaly” skin.
(4) The patient admitted that she could not recall everything Dr. Memar had told her.
(5) What little was left of Ms. Gordon’s credibility–generally and as to her memory– disappeared
with her testimony that “after I saw Dr. Robinson, I decided I was no longer going to see Dr.
Memar for any of my more important dermatological needs.” (Gordon Tr. 736). Conveniently
forgotten was that after fourteen months of treatment at Dr. Robinson’s office, Ms. Gordon went
to Memar when faced with the prospect of melanoma. In fact a pre cancerous mole was removed
by Dr. Memar at that time and confirmed by biopsy.
(6) Finally, Tina Guttierez, the government’s own witness who administered Ms. Gordon’s IPL
treatments, testified without contradiction that Ms. Gordon’s AK’s were so pervasive that she
thought that some were actual skin cancer.
f) Ex-FBI agent present at meeting Dr. Memar had with Blue Cross and Blue Shield in January 2013
i) In this meeting, Dr. Memar was told that his treatment of patient 2 was fraudulent. The agent was
asked what Dr. Memar’s reaction was. The agent said that Dr. Memar got angry and denied the
charges (paraphrase).
(1) Mr Lee in his closing argument said made a “misstatement” and said that I confessed. The
travesty is that both I and this ex-agent contradicted Mr. Lee’s repeated and loud “misstatement.”
This “misstatement” was the last word heard by the jury. YOU BE THE JUDGE AS TO THE
FAIRNESS OF THIS TRIAL.
g) Dermatologists called in by the government
i) Dr. Robinson (she saw patient 7 and 8 around the time Dr. Memar was treating them)
(1) Robinson, who was clear that there is no single treatment for AK and certainly no standard of
care that precludes treatment of AK with IPL alone.
(2) Robinson also rejected the significance of the indictment patients’ inability to remember whether
they were told they had AK years ago, since even her current patients commonly do not recall
what she has told them
(3) She conceded that these two patients indisputably had several other skin conditions that she had
neglected to note.
(4) She said that she would not have noted actinic keratosis lesions if she was not looking for them
or was instead focusing on other skin conditions
(5) Robinson conceded that her charts for these patients included all of the symptoms of actinic
keratosis
(6) Robinson would never have said that Ms. Gordon never had AK, especially since Ms. Gordon
had a “history of blistering sunburns”–making her a classic candidate for AK
(7) Robinson’s testimony actually buttressed Dr. Memar’s diagnosis of AK, and most assuredly did
not support the absence of AK beyond a reasonable doubt, especially since all of the doctors
admitted that dermatologists can reach differing diagnoses concerning AK.
ii) Dr. Ross (government’s expert witness)
(1) Ross never viewed a single patient file and thus offered no testimony whatsoever on the critical
issue of whether any of them had actinic keratosis.
(2) He conceded, however, that there is no standard of care that prohibits treatment of actinic
keratosis with IPL alone, just as he admitted that it involved low side-effects (downtime and
discomfort)
(3) he conceded that a doctor who administered IPL alone for AK in the good faith belief of its
effectiveness has notdone “anything wrong.”
(4) There can be no doubt as to Dr. Memar’s belief in the efficacy of IPL without Levulan for
treating actinic keratosis given his use of that treatment for the eight biopsy-confirmed AK
patients called by the defense.
(5) Ross stressed that not seeing AK’s “happens a lot” when the dermatologist is focused on other
skin conditions
h) Summary from what the government showed against Dr. Memar
(1) The government accused Dr. Memar that the 8 patients did not have actinic keratosis. However,
no doctor examined the patients and definitively said that they did not have actinic keratosis. So
where does the government get off making such statements? In fact, each of the patients
presented the classic symptoms of actinic keratosis by their own admission, two of which were
corroborated by the charts of another doctor. No doctor, including the government’s primary
expert, Dr. Ross, even opined that these patients did not have actinic keratosis. And each patient
was treated with an internationally recognized modality for that condition.
(2) The government accuses Dr. Memar of fraud since the patients were treated for so long, but this
is normal, as Goldberg had AK patients whose treatments spanned 30 years. Also peer reviewed
publications were presented showing the use of IPL for actinic keratosis over a period of 2 years.
(3) The government disputed the effectiveness of IPL for actinic keratosis, however, we presented
published data from around the world showing world-wide recognition of IPL alone as effective
for treating actinic keratosis.
(4) The government accused Dr. Memar of confessing at his meeting with Blue Cross in January
2013 to doing photorejuvenation on patient 2. This implied a cosmetic rather than a medical use
of IPL.
(a) Dr Memar’s response on the stand:
(i) I never… said photorejuvenation. That is a, I hate to use the word, fib. That is not correct.
I was not doing it for photorejuvenation
(b) To be sure, had Dr. Memar confessed, Blue Cross would have issued an immediate demand
refund letter in response to the alleged confession to the assemblage. However, no refund
was demanded.
(i) BCBS had merely asked Dr. Memar to thereafter provide additional support for his
position that the IPL treatments were medical rather than cosmetic–a request it never
would have made had he just confessed that they were cosmetic
(5) Finally, the government cannot brush its misstatements aside as harmless missteps. As it
repeatedly told the jury, Dr. Memar’s purported confession was its “most important” evidence.
4) Dr. Memar’s witnesses
a) Eight patients called by the defense, who included two retired police officers, business executives, an
engineer, and a priest, placed beyond doubt Dr. Memar’s faith in IPL and the chronic nature of that
condition.
i) Their actinic keratosis for which each received IPL year after year was biopsy-confirmed and hence
indisputable.
b) Dr. David Goldberg, dermatologist
i) Reviewed the actual patient charts, unlike the government’s expert witness. He did not see any
irregularities in the charts
ii) He treated his own wife’s actinic keratosis with IPL
iii) He called IPL an elegant treatment for actinic keratosis
5) Dr Memar took the stand
a) Mr. Lee asked Dr. Memar if he had confessed in the January 2013 meeting with BCBS that he
performed photorejuvenation.
i) Dr. Memar responded with “No, I did not; where is your evidence?”
ii) Mr. Lee ignored Dr. Memar at this point and returned to his podium.
iii) However, what happened next changed the course of the trial. In his closing argument, Mr. Lee
repeatedly misstated that I had confessed at that meeting even though I told him less than an hour
earlier that I denied it and the ex-FBI agent present in the meeting confirmed my statement in his
testimony.
In short, Mr Stephen C. Lee ended his final statement with loud and repetitive “he admitted it,” and this was the
last word the jury heard. After a few hours of deliberation, I was found guilty of medical fraud and giving
fraudulent information for all 8 patients that the government listed. That means the jury determined beyond a
reasonable doubt that Dr. Memar knew all 8 patients did not have actinic keratosis but treated them anyway. As
shown above, no evidence presented by the government proved beyond a reasonable doubt that Dr. Memar
knew these patients did not have pre-cancers and treated them anyway. Remember patient number ii from
above, she had a biopsy proven skin cancer; she was prescribed Solaraze® gel, which is only FDA approved for
actinic keratosis and Dr. Memar diagnosed her with actinic keratosis. How can it be believable that a person
with a skin cancer is devoid of pre-cancers beyond a reasonable doubt. She even in court stated that Dr. Memar
said something about pre-cancers, but Mr. Stephen C. Lee extended his neck and asked if Dr. Memar had told
her she has actinic keratosis, to which she said no. Why this game of semantics?
With all this overwhelming evidence in support of Dr. Memar and the misstatement of Mr. Lee, why was Dr.
Memar found guilty?

The government had found that my practice had 600 AK patients from 2007 to 2013. However that is normal.
8 day court usa vs memar, the government presented 8 patients as evidence.  The government claimed that I had falsely diagnosed these patients with “actinic keratoses” and then unnecessarily treated them using IPL. In hindsight, it seems, I may not have done a good job communicating my treatment plan to them, since the government managed to get some of them to testify that they thought they were getting cosmetic treatments using insurance. However, I never would knowingly misdiagnose any patient. This would go against the very grain of everything I stand for Reference, read the countless comments from patients on here or facebook. If your interested in a detailed explanation, refer to link A (click here) or and  Outline of trial against Dr (click here).
During the trial, the Assistant Attorney General Stephen Chanhg Lee asked me under oath whether I had admitted to BC/BS in the 2013 meeting that I had performed photo-rejuvenation, implying I had admitted to defrauding BC/BS . I denied it and requested supporting evidence. He ignored me. Had I made such an admission, BC/BS would have been obligated to request repayment of all “fraudulent” claims. They did not. Instead they told me to provide better documentation in future claims. Furthermore, remember the ex-FBI present at the Jan 2013 meeting confirmed my version of events under oath.
Yet, Stephen C Lee, during his closing argument (the government gets the last word during a criminal trial) repeatedly and angrily proclaimed that I had “confessed to it.”  not once not twice but many times and ran up and down in front of the jury in almost a dance. while running he was facing the jury but twice he turned his entire body toward me during these repeated utterances with both his index fingers extended, pointing at me. It was different than any other time he presented or any other lawyers presentation at the trial. In the governments response to our post-trial motions, the government addresses this moment as,
“Even if the government misstated or overstated the testimony regarding defendant’s statements to Blue Cross Blue Shield, defendant has not shown that he suffered prejudice warranting a new trial here.”
Therefore they cannot back up Mr Lee’s “he admitted it” and even admit as far as calling it “misstated”. This mis-statement of my testimony by Stephen C Lee effectively amounts to lying during his closing argument by proclaiming “he admitted it,” when I had actually denied it.  These untrue words were the last thing the jury heard and I was convicted of 16 counts of medical fraud on May 10, 2017, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
The jury was dealing with a very complicated medical case with difficult jargon and treatment protocols that went on for 8 days.
I believe our government officials, especially in the U.S. Department of Justice, should be held to the highest standards. Lying is not acceptable.
During my 14 year skin cancer practice, no one was under-diagnosed. I prided the practice for detecting skin cancer early.⋯Sadly, a patient who had a history of precancerous moles contacted the office in mid 2017. He was not one to go see the doctor. We used to beg him to come in and I caught many pre-cancerous moles on him. Due to insurances dropping me upon indictment, he would not come in or go to another dermatologist. We had a list of dermatologists we sent our patients to…… He notified us that he was recently diagnosed with skin cancer, this time in his brain. This sort of thing never happened on my watch. His is the greatest tragedy of this case. I would have been happier never to practice medicine than see the tragedy of this case.

 

 

 

Comments ( 29 )

  • Jason Fairchild

    Dear The Honorable Harry D Leinenweber,

    I have known Dr. Memar for about 10 years, I have used his practice and know him not only professional but also on a personal level.
    He has always conducted himself in a respectful , honorary and professional manner.
    He is a very honest and forthright person, if you have any questions about his ethics , give me a call.

    Please hear his story.

    Best,

    Jason Fairchild
    312-498-9832

  • Jason Fairchild

    Dear The Honorable Harry D Leinenweber,

    I have known Dr. Memar for about 10 years, I have used his practice and know him not only professional but also on a personal level.
    He has always conducted himself in a respectful , honorary and professional manner.
    He is a very honest and forthright person, if you have any questions about his ethics , give me a call.

    Please hear his story.

    Best,

    Jason Fairchild
    312-498-9832

  • Lucy A Sharkey

    Dear The Honorable Harry D Leinenweber,
    I have known Dr. Memar for 12 years. He has biopsied many ‘suspicious’ spots on me and thankfully none were cancerous. I had stage 4 melanoma in the past and it is imperative that I get checked on a regular basis. Dr. Memar is very careful and honest with his findings. He would NEVER tell anyone they had cancer just to make a profit. Please let me know if I can assist any further in the next few weeks.

    Thank you so much!

    Lucy Sharkey
    lucysharkey.13@gmail.com

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  • Alex Shibicky

    Dear Judge Leinenweber:

    I and my family have known Dr Memar on a personal and professional basis for over 12 years and have depended upon him for his professional and unbiased care. His attention to detail and thorough examinations have helped me keep a lookout for suspicious growths and he has biopsied several over the years and has truly had my best interests at heart.

    The mere thought of Dr Memar ever suggesting an unnecessary procedure or a made-up diagnosis is so completely foreign and unfathomable that I consider it ridiculous and unbelievable on any level.

    The idea of a court of law taking the word of one FBI agent over the word of another FBI agent with the career and reputation of a doctor and/or any human being hanging in the balance goes against everything that this country and the law stands for. Dr Memar deserves the benefit of the doubt. He has been convicted, OK, but to flush his career and life down the drain seems to be “overkill” and a departure of what’s fair and within the discrepancies presented to the court. Sometimes common sense and being equitable must rule the day. We all deserve a second chance and I must say that it’s a sorry day for ANY OF US that we get judged for all of eternity by our “worst 15 minutes”, never mind malicious lies!

    Respectfully, allow Dr Memar to redeem himself in his chosen field and don’t ostracize him from society. He has paid a heavy enough price as is.

    • Omeed Memar

      Dear Alex
      Thank you for your wonderful words. Please mail this to the judge. His address is in my first blog post. You guys are awesome and sorry for all the trouble and inconvenience.

  • Arash Tirandaz, MD

    Dear The Honorable Harry D Leinenweber,

    I knew Dr. Omeed Memar in medical school as we attended the same medical school in Galveston, Texas. I also know his parents. They are honorable people. I concur with the others that the mere thought of Dr Memar ever suggesting an unnecessary procedure or a made-up diagnosis is so completely foreign and unfathomable that I consider it unbelievable

    He always conducted himself in an honorable fashion and I find it very hard to believe the accusations against him. I ask that you give him a fair trial and provide him with an appropriate appeal.

    He his brilliant and it is not easy to get an MD and a PHD, he has worked so hard to get at this point. He deserves a fair and impartial trial along with the benefit of every doubt.

    Respectfully,
    A. Tirandaz, MD

  • Marianne McGeary

    In the early 2000’s, Dr. Memar was our “skin doctor” in the Orland Park office of my husband’s HMO. Our family has a strong history of melanoma (me, my mother, my brother–who died of the disease); Dr. Memar not only kept us safe through check-ups over the years, but made sure we understood how to watch for symptoms. When Dr. Memar moved his practice downtown, we followed him. We trust him completely, and this is based on his honesty and knowledge as well as his kindness and empathy..
    I read the attached case notes, and I am saddened at the way the jury was misled by the prosecuting attorneys. I will be writing to Judge Leinenweber care of Mr. Staes, asking the judge to set aside this wrongful conviction.

  • Pierre Dosogne

    Dear The Honorable Harry D Leinenweber
    I first became a patient of Dr Omeed Memar in July of 2002 when I was referred to him by my primary care Physician, Dr. Frances Thomas and her colleague, Dr Pamela Warnick. Dr Meemar enjoyed a collaborative work relationship with my care givers and came highly recommended. Dr Memar diagnosed a basal cell tumor and after confirmation by laboratory biopsy, removed the growth.
    Because of my health issues, I am subject to skin cancer, but with the regular care of Dr Memar, all of my skin cancer issues- including a melanoma have been addressed by Dr Memar in the same careful professional manner. I believe that I owe the fact that I am alive – as well as the quality of my life to my Doctors including Dr Memar and I am very grateful .
    My skin care issues continue and I am currently being seen by Dr Nalam Amin who speaks highly of Dr Memar and whose treatment is similar – if not exactly the same.
    Anything I can do to support Dr Memar in this situation, I will gladly do

    Thank you for your attention and consideration of my input

    Pierre Dosogne

  • Salma Foroozan

    To whom it may concern:

    Dr. Memar has been a reliable, trustworthy and decent person ever since I have known him that goes back to our childhood. Dr. Memar is a hard-working individual and highly committed to his practice. He is a loyal, honest, considerate, and supportive person who has the ability to see and understand things from another person’s perspective.

    I truly can not think of any negative attributes when it comes to Dr Memar. All in all, I would have to say that Dr. Memar is a fine, and well-balanced person with an abundance of positive qualities who has always been willing to extend a helping hand to whomever has needed his assistance both in his professional and social lives.

    I hope this letter will give you an idea of Dr. Memar’s good character and help him get a second chance to prove this occurrence is very unusual and ill-fated.

    Thank you for taking the time to read this letter.

    Sincerely,

    Salma Foroozan

  • Azar Owlia

    Dear Judge Leinenweber,

    My family and I have known Dr. Memar for over 30 years, and have been very excited to have seen Dr. Memar grow into the practice that he has been leading.

    During the time that he was a medical student at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, my husband and I were working in the cancer research division of UTMB, and so we learned, and now know, how important an early diagnosis of cancer can be for the patients, and their families.

    We have always known Dr. Memar as a very respectful, and intelligent doctor, and we can not fathom that he has suggested any unnecessary procedures, or an on-purpose misdiagnosis of any patients for his own financial benefits. We can not perceive that his passion to serve the multitude of patients yet to be served would not allow him to make decisions that would hinder or put an end to his practice.

    In agreement with Dr. Tirandaz, we ask that you give Dr. Memar “a fair trial and provide him with an appropriate appeal”. He does deserve an “impartial trial”!

    Respectfully,
    Azar Owlia

  • David R. Baker

    Dear Judge Leinenweber:
    I am a member of bc/bs hmo. I have been referred to Dr. Memar for Mohs surgery and have found him to be professional and caring. After he had left my hmo, I had trouble finding a doctor who performed Mohs surgery and who was a part of my network. I called him asking the cost of a squamous cell cancer removal by Mohs surgery. He quoted a cost that I could not afford and when I told him so he said I could pay what I was able to. This does not sound like a man looking to make a quick buck.
    I am saddened to hear that Dr. Memar has been so badly portrayed by the government.

    Yours,
    David R. Baker

  • Joyce Zletz

    Joyce Zletz July 22 2017

    Honorable Judge Leinenweber

    My husband Alex and I were introduced to Dr. Omeed Memar in 2002 at a dinner party by a friend who held an administrative position at the Osteopathic Hospital in Hyde Park. Alex,a retired research Chemist and veteran of World War Two, was 83 at that time.During his military career, he was stationed on Kwajalien Atoll in the Pacific.This Atoll was devoid of trees and shade due to the devastating bombing of both the Japanese and the Americans.
    Alex is very fair skinned. His exposure to the sun for many month on Kwajalien and subsequent water skiing and tennis playing, led to many skin problems.He had medical treatment for cancer and pre-cancer over the years. We however, were so impressed in 2002 listening to this young Dr Memar talk about his life ambition to help people young or old, rich or poor, with skin cancer that we decided to make an appointment and give him a try.
    I am proud to say that we have been patients and personal friends ever since.
    During these past 15 years, Dr. Memar has performed several Mohs surgeries on Alex’s nose face and ears and treated pre-cancers. Always with great competence,efficiency and gentleness; explaining exactly what he was doing before and during any procedure.
    He also performed a Mohs surgery on the bridge of my nose, removed a tumor on the side of my face and stopped the bleeding of a blood vessel hemangioma on my bottom lip. Always careful and deliberate explaining what we must do to expedite the healing process. In consideration of Alex’s age, now, of 98 years he used the IPL once or twice on pre-cancer to prevent the necessity of future invasive surgery.

    It is incomprehensible, that a man so dedicated to his patients and to his profession should be denied his license to practice what he lives for.

    It is also incomprehensible that 8 patients ,(the 8 witnesses) two of whom are still patients, either did not know or couldn’t remember that they were being treated for cancer or pre-cancer and were somehow convinced later that it was a cosmetic treatment .

    Over the years, I have learned that words sometimes are more powerful than deeds. Words , even misinformation repeated over and over louder and louder can influence a jury to accept the words of a prosecutor as true. and there by convict.
    Judge Leinenweber,
    In my heart and humble opinion; the Assistant Attorney General, has succeeded with his words, in creating a terrible injustice.
    I implore you to reverse this injustice allowing Dr. Memar to continue his profession helping to eradicate his patients cancer and continue his life’s work. His work is his life.

    Respectfully,
    Joyce Zletz

  • Soha Rafi

    Dear The Honorable Judge Leinenweber,
    I have known Dr Memar to be nothing but kind, compassionate, and empathetic. I went to him during a time of need, in which I was unable to financially cover the medical procedure in which I was seeking out. I went to him for a consultation and he explained the procedure to me very thoroughly and answered all of my questions and concerns. During the consultation I mentioned my financial situation and my hesitance due to this circumstance. Dr Memar never hesitated, turned me down or away, and never altered his professional and kind demeanor. He told me not to worry about the associated costs and that it was an insignificant hurdle. After the thorough and comprehensive consultation, Dr Memar offered to perform the services we discussed completely free of charge and at 100% of his own time and expense.
    I was overjoyed and admittedly surprised that Dr Memar would offer his services to me completely free of charge. I was never once treated as any less of a patient than anyone else at the center during any point of my treatment (from beginning to end). I was always treated with the same compassion and empathy I experienced on my initial consultation day. Every step of my journey with Dr Memar was done with care and professionalism. I was extremely happy with my results and with the high level of service and compassion in which I received from Dr Memar. He made sure that my recovery process was equally as pleasant as my initial consult and all follow up appointments were treated with care and professionalism. I never felt rushed or disregarded as a patient even though I was not financially covering my services.
    Dr Memar is a decent, kind, and professional doctor and human being. I have never encountered an experience with another medical service provider that could even come close to what I experienced with Dr Memar.
    Kindly
    Soha Rafi
    703-772-3788

  • Marsha Brawner

    To whom it may concern, I’ve only known Dr Memar for a year and a half. I was referred to him by my Employer Dr Daftary D.D.S, for a cortisone injection in my right knee. I was very hesitant at first because I knew he wasn’t an Orthopedic doctor,but he eased my fears and performed the best cortisone injection!!! I was able to not only watch my daughter play on team usa in Brazil, but I was able to walk around Brazil without any pain.!!! I was pain free for a year and then experienced that same nagging pain,not being able to walk,run or play with my grandson the way I wanted to, so I made another appointment with Dr. Memar for another miracle injection that NO other Orthopedic doctor has been able to duplicate! I arrived at my appointment eager and anticipating my treatment which I paid for prior to going into the room. only to be examined by Dr Memar and denied my injection. Dr Memar was very concerned over the swelling in my legs and advised me to see my medical doctor immediately. I’m writing you to bring awareness to a Doctor who refunded my money,and did the right thing for me medically!! He was very concerned for my life and even went as far to see if a colleague could see me that very day. If he were money hungry he would jumped at the Opportunity to prey upon a victim who was self pay and desperate for his help!!
    Please listen the voices of his patients and allow him a fair trial!!!
    Sincerely,

    Marsha Brawner

  • Brandon W. Stiner

    Omeed, you are my favorite Chicago Doc. I want to help, can I still send a letter?

    • Omeed Memar

      Thanks Branson
      Sure, you can still write. The judge has not yet rendered a verdict.

  • Farideh touti

    Dear Judge Leineweber
    I already sent letter to you and I beg you for helping to save my life and many other cancerous patients that were under the treatment of professional person as doctor Omid Memar. By your decision for allowing Dr. Memar to continue his profession helping to save his patients life. PLEASE DON’T PUT ANOTHER JESUS ON THE CROSS AGAIN. I’m nurse and I saved many babies life so please let me to be alive by being under supervision of Dr. Memar again. WITH RESPECT : Farideh Touti

  • Eric Guy

    Dear Judge Leineweber,

    I knew Dr. Omeed Memar in medical school in Galveston. What I remember about Omeed was that he was a very gentle, intelligent, and considerate person. I remember that he had an exceptionally beautiful and graceful father and mother. I do not know what was in Omeed’s mind or whether he is guilty or innocent. But what I do know is that if I were to give any clemency to any person who possibly could be guilty of the crime he is being convicted for, he would be the person I would give clemency. Because every person deserves a kind hand when down, not only would I give Omeed a big hand, but I would give him a big hug once he was up. Eventhough Omeed and I do not agree in politics (I think not), I do recognize a truly kind and sincere and beautiful soul when I see it.
    Dr. Eric C. Guy MD (classmate 1995)

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