- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 8, 2017

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - A former Huntsville doctor who was once considered the nation’s most prolific Medicare prescriber of opioid painkillers has been sentenced to 15 years in federal prison.

U.S. Attorney Robert Posey said in a news release that 48-year-old Shelinder Aggarwal was sentenced Tuesday after pleading guilty last year to illegally prescribing controlled substances and conducting at least $9.5 million in health care fraud involving unnecessary and unused urine tests.

In pleading guilty in October, Aggarwal agreed to pay $6.7 million in restitution to Medicare and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama. He also agreed to give up the clinic he had operated.

Alabama pharmacies filled about 110,000 of Aggarwal’s prescriptions for controlled substances in 2012, resulting in about 12.3 million pills.

Aggarwal must report to prison on April 12.

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