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Paulus sentenced to five years

COVINGTON, Ky — A Kentucky doctor convicted of health care fraud has been sentenced to five years in prison and ordered to pay $1 million in restitution.

Former cardiologist Richard Paulus appeared before U.S. District U.S. District Judge David Bunning on Thursday for sentencing and continued to maintain his innocence in the case.

Federal prosecutors say he performed unnecessary heart procedures as part of a health care fraud scheme in Eastern Kentucky.

Paulus was a cardiologist at King’s Daughters Medical Center in Ashland when authorities received an anonymous complaint in 2008 alleging that he was committing fraud by performing unnecessary procedures.
Defense attorney Bob Bennett said he was disappointed in Thursday’s sentence and will appeal.

A jury convicted Paulus on 11 charges in October 2016, but U.S. District Judge David Bunning later set aside the verdict, acquitting Paulus.

Bunning ruled that prosecutors didn’t prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Paulus had “acted with fraudulent intent.”

A three-judge panel of the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated Paulus’ criminal conviction in July 2018.
Bunning ordered a new trial, but the appeals court said that decision wasn’t adequately justified. It sent the case back to him for further consideration.

The Associated Press contributed to this report