- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 6, 2008

A Maryland pain doctor is facing criminal charges after a nearly two-year federal investigation into millions of dollars in insurance claims that his office submitted to Medicare and other insurance programs.

Dr. Martin R. McLaren, whose Pain Management Center has operated offices in Largo, Oxon Hill and Waldorf, is accused of making false statements and aiding and abetting, according charges filed recently in federal court in the District.

The Washington Times first reported last year that federal authorities had moved to seize bank accounts and a 2005 Porsche belonging to Dr. McLaren.

According to charging documents, authorities say Dr. McLaren submitted claims for office visits for patients who were picking up prescriptions but never saw a physician.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office also said Dr. McLaren’s office billed for some epidural procedures for which his office did not have equipment.

Last year, authorities seized personal bank accounts in the name of Dr. McLaren and his wife worth $714,165 and are pursuing another $5.8million, according to an FBI affidavit.

Phone and e-mail messages left with Dr. McLaren’s attorney, Kirby D. Behre, were not returned yesterday evening. He previously told The Times that the case could be resolved in civil court “if in fact there were billing errors.”

Dr. McLaren told investigators that an employee was embezzling money from the practice, according to an FBI affidavit.

Investigators also raised questions about compensation to Dr. McLaren’s wife, who earned about $820,000 in 2004, according to court records.

Citing interviews, the FBI affidavit stated that payments to Dr. McLaren’s wife “do not appear to be warranted given … that she occasionally takes dictation.”

According to public records, Dr. McLaren completed graduate medical school at the University of the West Indies, in Jamaica, in 1968. He completed an internship at Princess Margaret Hospital, in the Bahamas, in 1970, and served as an assistant professor at Howard University’s College of Medicine from 1973 to 1982.

Records on file with the Maryland Board of Physicians show Dr. McLaren, a licensed anesthesiologist, had no known disciplinary actions during the past decade.

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