A Virginia OB-GYN accused of performing unnecessary hysterectomies and other procedures without his patients' consent was sentenced Tuesday to 59 years in prison, following his November conviction on 52 counts of health care fraud and other crimes after a three-week trial, reports the Washington Post. "Justice is done and whatever he gets in prison now, he deserves," former patient Anita Fuller says of Javaid Perwaiz's sentence, per WAVY, which notes the 71-year-old has been ordered to pay restitution of nearly $21 million to the private and government insurance companies he bilked. Court records show that after Perwaiz's conviction, the government seized property, a Bentley, and more than $2 million from his assets, per the New York Times. Among the unwanted and unneeded procedures that prosecutors say Perwaiz performed were irreversible hysterectomies, D&Cs, improper sterilizations, and tubal ligations, causing permanent damage for multiple patients.
All this, prosecutors say, so he could collect insurance money. Perwaiz—who'd enjoyed a 40-year career in Hampton Roads, with two private offices and admitting privileges at two area hospitals—was arrested in the fall of 2019 when an FBI probe uncovered the fraud he'd been involved in for nearly a decade. Prosecutors say he would trick patients into the unnecessary procedures by using faulty equipment or by telling them they had cancer that could be addressed via those procedures. "Motivated by his insatiable and reprehensible greed, Perwaiz used an arsenal of horrifying tactics to manipulate and deceive patients into undergoing invasive, unnecessary, and devastating medical procedures," says Raj Parekh, acting US attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, in a statement. Perwaiz, who during his trial insisted everything he'd done was for the good of his patients, intends to appeal. (Read more health care fraud stories.)