Doctor sentenced for taking bribes


A North Arlington doctor has been sentenced to 37 months in prison for accepting more than $130,000 in bribes in exchange for referring patients to a Parsippany clinical-testing lab, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman reports.

Dr. Angelo Calabrese, 57, an internist who resides in Pine Brook but had his medical practice in North Arlington, previously pleaded guilty to one count of accepting bribes, authorities said.

U.S. District Judge Stanley R. Chesler handed down the sentence last Thursday in Newark Federal Court.

As part of his guilty plea, Calabrese must also forfeit $334,000.

Federal authorities said a long-running test-referral scheme was operated by Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services (BLS) of Parsipppany, its president, and numerous associates.

Including Calabrese, 37 people — 25 of them physicians — have pleaded guilty in connection with the scheme, which its organizers have admitted involved millions of dollars in bribes and brought in more than $100 million in payments to BLS from Medicare and private insurance companies, Fishman reported.

To date, the investigation has recovered more than $10.5 million through forfeitures.

According to court records, Calabrese admitted accepting more than $130,000 in bribes to refer at least $600,000 in business to BLS.

From 2010 through 2013, the doctor received more than $4,500 per month from BLS through sham consulting and rental agreements, Fishman said.

In addition to the prison term and forfeiture, Calabrese must serve one year of supervised release and pay a fine of $5,000.

Fishman credited special agents of the FBI, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, IRS Criminal Investigation, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service with the ongoing investigation leading to the sentencing.

– Karen Zautyk 

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