Today at St Albans Crown Court, two men were found guilty of Theft, Fraud and Bribery Act offences against the NHS following a seven-week trial. A third man had entered a guilty plea prior to the trial commencing. The investigation was undertaken by the NHS Counter Fraud Authority, with the prosecution led by the Crown Prosecution Service, with the total value of all offences being more than £600,000.
Hasan Abusheikha, (47) formerly a Theatre Manager at St Albans City Hospital Trust was found guilty of offences under the Theft, Fraud and Bribery Acts. He was remanded in custody to be sentenced on Wednesday 24th May.
Elmo Emanuel, who was Chief Executive Officer of Implants International and Xtremity Solutions Ltd (both of which were companies supplying medical equipment to the Hospital) was found guilty of one charge of bribing Abusheikha.
A second Trust supplier, Jawid Khan, a Director of TSI Med Ltd had already pleaded guilty to one charge of bribing Abusheikha prior to the trial opening.
The Court heard that Abusheikha was in a position of responsibility within the NHS, where he was able to procure medical equipment on behalf of the trust. As part of his role, he was required to make purchase order requests for items required for surgical procedures carried out within the hospital. The investigation undertaken by the NHS CFA was able to prove that Abusheikha was in a relationship with two Trust suppliers in which he accepted bribes to ensure that the Trust procured medical equipment from the companies concerned. Abusheikha was also convicted of receiving payments from two further suppliers to the trust. He ordered goods from these companies that he himself had supplied to them. In return, he received at least two-thirds of the value of the goods invoiced.
During the investigation Abusheikha’s house was searched, and a large number of orthopaedic implantable devices, surgical instruments and medical equipment with a value in excess of £65K was recovered. The investigation was able to prove that these had been stolen from the Trust.
All three will be sentenced at St Albans Crown Court at a later date after which the NHSCFA and CPS will be leading a process under the Proceeds of Crime Act aiming to recover any funds fraudulently obtained back to the NHS.
Following the verdict NHS CFA Senior Fraud Investigator Gemma Quemby said, “We are pleased that we were able to work with our colleagues from the Crown Prosecution Service to put evidence before the court to show the full extent of the criminality of those involved.”
Richard Rippin, Head of Operations of the NHS Counter Fraud Authority, said: “NHS CFA will always work to protect the NHS from those who seek to defraud it and divert moneys intended for patient care into their own bank accounts. We are delighted that we were able to bring this case to Court to ensure the appropriate outcome for the NHS.”
For more information contact the NHSCFA press office on firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editors
The NHS Counter Fraud Authority is a Special Health Authority established under the NHS Act 2006 as amended. It is sponsored by the Department for Health and Social Care, accountable to the department’s Anti-Fraud Unit (AFU).
We estimate that the NHS is vulnerable to £1.198 billion worth of fraud each year.
When NHSCFA uses the term ‘fraud’, we refer to a range of economic crimes, such as fraud, bribery, corruption or any other illegal acts committed by an individual or group of individuals to obtain a financial or professional gain.
NHSCFA also supports the work of the NHS Counter Fraud Service (Wales).
NHSCFA works closely with NHS Local Counter Fraud Specialists across the NHS in England to ensure that healthcare crime is tackled, and a culture of fraud prevention and deterrence is in place.
NHSCFA works collaboratively with NHS Scotland Counter Fraud Services on fraud issues.
There are some 300 professionally trained and accredited Local Counter Fraud Specialists in place within health bodies across England and Wales.
If you suspect that anyone is committing fraud or another economic crime against the NHS, tell NHSCFA about it – you can visit our main website to report online: www.cfa.nhs.uk or telephone our 24-hour reporting line 0800 028 40 60.
“NHS fraud. Spot it, report it, together we stop it”