(Phoenix, Ariz.) March 13, 2012 -- Attorney General Tom Horne announced today that a Glendale man has been sentenced to prison and probation for prescription drug fraud.
35-year old Americo DaCosta received an aggravated sentence of three years in the Arizona Department of Corrections on one count of Forgery, a class four felony. In addition, DaCosta received a four year supervised probation sentence on one count of Acquisition of Narcotic Drugs by Fraud, a class 3 felony. His probation will begin following his stay in prison.
“Prescription drug fraud is a serious matter,” Horne said. “This type of crime compromises the integrity of the health care system, increases costs, and, most seriously, it endangers people’s lives.”
Horne added, “I want to thank the Peoria Police Department for their hard work and cooperation on this case.”
DaCosta was charged in Maricopa County as a result of a joint investigation conducted by the Peoria Police Department, the Attorney General’s Office Special Investigations and Health Care Fraud and Abuse Sections.
The joint investigation uncovered that from September 2009 to July 2010 DaCosta manufactured and negotiated numerous counterfeit business checks to several local pharmacies. Additionally, DaCosta was responsible for passing a large number of fraudulent prescriptions in order for him to obtain prescription narcotic drugs. A search of DaCosta’s residence led law enforcement to seize multiple items commonly used to manufacture counterfeit checks.
This case was referred to the Arizona Attorney General’s Office by the Peoria Police Department and was prosecuted by the Criminal Division’s Health Care Fraud and Abuse Section.