72-year-old surgeon sentenced to 3 years in $31M 'trip-and-fall' scheme


New York City pain management surgeon Sady Ribeiro, MD, 72, has been sentenced to three years in prison in connection to a $31 million "trip-and-fall" scheme, according to a March 23 report from New York radio station WINS.

Dr. Ribeiro pleaded guilty in September, alongside orthopedic surgeon Andrew Dowd, MD, attorneys George Constantine and Marc Elefant, litigation funder Adrian Alexander, two fraud ringleaders and three "runners" who recruited patients.  

Dr. Ribeiro and Mr. Alexander, 75, would allegedly recruit people from homeless shelters and drug facilities, staging "trip" accidents. 

Mr. Alexander would then pursue lawsuits against businesses where the fall occurred, while Dr. Ribeiro performed 200 unneeded surgeries and medical procedures on the patients. 

Patients would undergo one or two surgeries and were paid between $1,000 and $1,500 per procedure. More than 400 patients participated in the scheme, in which the orchestrators earned over $31 million. 

Mr. Alexander pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud in August. Dr. Ribeiro pleaded guilty to the same charges in September. 

Dr. Ribeiro will face three years of post-supervision release following his three-year sentence. 

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