FDA Press Release –
Members of the conspiracy unlawfully purchased Serostrim (a drug for HIV and AIDS patients) from patients and then re-sold the drugs to wholesale drug distributors at a high profit. As part of the conspiracy, the group created false drug pedigrees that suggested that the drugs had been obtained through legitimate distributors.
CONCORD – Boaz BenMoshe, 58, of Israel, was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison for bail jumping and participating in a conspiracy to engage in the unlicensed wholesale distribution of prescription drugs, Acting United States Attorney John J. Farley announced today.
According to court documents and statements made in court, in November 2006, a federal grand jury charged BenMoshe with conspiracy to launder monetary instruments and conspiracy to engage in unlicensed wholesale distribution of prescription drugs. Members of the conspiracy unlawfully purchased Serostrim (a drug for HIV and AIDS patients) from patients and then re-sold the drugs to wholesale drug distributors at a high profit. As part of the conspiracy, the group created false drug pedigrees that suggested that the drugs had been obtained through legitimate distributors.
After an initial appearance hearing in California on January 29, 2007, BenMoshe was released on conditions including his promise to notify the pretrial services officer of any plans to change his residence and to travel outside of the Central District of California and the District of New Hampshire.
On January 9, 2009, BenMoshe pleaded guilty to conspiracy to engage in unlicensed wholesale distribution of prescription drugs. The Court accepted his guilty plea and permitted him to continue on the same conditions of release pending sentencing. The sentencing hearing was scheduled for June 23, 2009. On or about April 29, 2009, in violation of his conditions of release, BenMoshe moved to Israel and failed to appear for his sentencing hearing on June 23, 2009.
On December 16, 2009, a federal grand jury charged BenMoshe with bail jumping for his failure to appear at his sentencing hearing. In August 2020, BenMoshe was extradited from Israel to the United States to face the charges pending against him in New Hampshire. He pleaded guilty to the bail jumping charge on January 27, 2021.
The Court sentenced BenMoshe to 18 months in prison for the conspiracy offense and an additional 12 months for the bail jumping offense. He will receive credit for the time he has been in custody prior to sentencing.
“Mr. BenMoshe committed a serious federal crime by participating in an unlawful scheme involving prescription drugs and committed yet another federal crime by failing to appear for his sentencing hearing,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Farley. “Although he fled from the United States, he was not able to avoid being held responsible for his criminal actions. As this case demonstrates, those who fail to appear in court will be held accountable for their actions and will face additional federal prison time.”
“U.S. consumers rely on FDA oversight to ensure that the drugs they receive are safe and effective. Improper distribution of prescription drugs of unknown origin put the health of all patients at significant risk,” said Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey J. Ebersole, Food and Drug Administration Office of Criminal Investigations’ New York Field Office. “We will continue to pursue and bring to justice those who put the public’s health at risk.”
“Mr. BenMoshe sought to enrich himself by engaging in illegal activity that may have put lives at risk,” said Phillip M. Coyne, Special Agent in Charge for the Office of Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. “His decision to flee the country only compounded his crime and the penalty that will ensue.”
“The U.S. Marshals Service applauds the US Attorney’s Office and other law enforcement agencies, to include the Israeli government, who worked tirelessly to bring about this sentence, and we are proud to have been a partner in the furtherance of justice,” said Nick Willard, U.S. Marshal for the District of New Hampshire.
The bail jumping matter was investigated by the U.S. Marshals Service. The underlying criminal case was investigated by the FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations, the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation. The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs assisted in securing BenMoshe’s extradition from Israel. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Cam Le and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah Hawkins.Arrests Fraud Healthcare Diversion Pharmacy Crime