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Man Sentenced for $1.9M Baby Formula Scheme

He forged prescriptions and medical records to obtain high volumes of expensive specialty formula.

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iStock.com/Tamer Soliman

A New York man was sentenced Friday to two years and nine months in prison and ordered to pay approximately $738,000 in restitution and forfeit approximately $1 million for his role in a scheme to fraudulently obtain specialty baby formula. 

According to court documents, Vladislav Kotlyar, 45, of Staten Island, submitted and caused the submission of forged prescriptions and medical records for specialty baby formula that was paid for by health insurers.

Kotlyar obtained prescriptions and medical records for infants who were prescribed baby formula and forged those records with respect to the type and amount of formula prescribed to obtain high volumes of expensive specialty baby formula. After receiving the specialty baby formula, Kotlyar fabricated issues with the shipments, including by impersonating the infants’ fathers, to falsely claim that shipments were damaged or contained the incorrect formula to acquire additional formula at no additional cost.

Kotlyar then sold the fraudulently obtained formula. A portion of Kotlyar’s scheme occurred during a national shortage of infant formula. 

Kotlyar previously pleaded guilty in March 2023 to mail fraud. 

Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Nicole M. Argentieri, head of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; U.S. Attorney Breon Peace for the Eastern District of New York; Assistant Director Michael Nordwall of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division; and Assistant Director in Charge James Smith of the FBI New York Field Office made the announcement.

The FBI New York Field Office investigated the case. 

Trial Attorney Patrick J. Campbell of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section prosecuted the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Claire S. Kedeshian for the Eastern District of New York assisted with forfeiture.

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