Published: Oct 13, 2011 4:53 PM EDT

MIAMI (AP) - Twenty-four people have been indicted in South Florida for allegedly trafficking in pain pills and conspiring to defraud Medicare.
Federal prosecutors in Miami said Wednesday the group includes a doctor, a pharmacist and two pain clinic operators. The indictment says the group made $40 million from illegal trafficking of oxycodone and other powerful pain relievers.
The conspiracy involved a group of recruiters who found Medicare beneficiaries to bring to the pain clinics. Doctors would write out the pain pill prescriptions and bill Medicare, as well as private insurance companies. Then the suspects would collect the pills from the beneficiaries and sell them.
Eight of the charges carry maximum 20-year prison sentences and the ninth has a 10-year maximum. Prosecutors are also seeking forfeiture of the $40 million in drug profits.

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