A Queensland doctor has been sentenced to four years in jail for falsely claiming Medicare payments for thousands of patients, some of whom were dead.
Tony Bakare, 50, was found guilty of obtaining financial advantage by deception after a three-day trial in the District Court in Brisbane.
The court heard he lodged more than 4,000 false claims for providing services to patients who had died, or on dates when he was overseas, totalling more than $360,000.
The claims were submitted through Medicare’s online system.
Bakare will be eligible for parole after serving 20 months.
In sentencing, Judge Tony Moynihan said he took into account that Bakare had not expressed remorse, but had cooperated with authorities.
“This was a persistent course of conduct involving a series of dishonest acts,” Judge Moynihan told the court.
“You were in a position of trust — the Medicare system relies on authorised doctors acting honestly.
“Your conviction will mean that you will be suspended from the practice initially and possibly deregistered or banned in the future.
“You will endure the shame that your offending will cause you in the future.
“Your mother is elderly and unwell and she may pass while you are in custody and your time in custody may be more onerous because you have little family here.”