Former Paramedic Charged in 37-Count Indictment With Wire Fraud, Making False Statements and Identity Theft Regarding the Theft of Controlled Substances
Donald S. Boyce, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, announced the unsealing of a 37 count indictment against Jason Laut, 39, of O’Fallon, Illinois. The indictment was returned by a federal grand jury in East St. Louis, Illinois on January 18, 2017. Laut who was arrested by the FBI, was arraigned today in East St. Louis, Illinois, on six counts of wire fraud, 29 counts of making false statements and two counts of identity theft.
The indictment returned by the grand jury alleges that Laut, who was a paramedic supervisor for MedStar Ambulance, changed, altered, and falsified documents and records, between January of 2013 and May of 2015 to conceal the theft of Fentanyl and Morphine. Both Fentanyl and Morphine are addictive Schedule II controlled pain killers. The indictment alleged that the theft of these controlled substances was from narcotic boxes that are maintained on ambulances in order to render aid to injured individuals consistent with operating procedures approved by a medical director or hospital orders.
Counts 1 through 6 of the indictment allege a wire fraud scheme claiming that Laut, using his administrator access for MedStar Ambulance, altered records stored outside of Illinois, known as patient care reports, to falsely indicate that controlled substances were given to patients when they were not. The theft of these drugs and acts to conceal the theft caused a loss to Memorial Hospital who was responsible, at their own cost, for keeping ambulance narcotic boxes filled.
Counts 7 through 35 of the indictment allege that Laut made false statements on narcotics logs submitted to Memorial Hospital. Narcotics logs are used by paramedics to record the circumstances of the administering of drugs including Fentanyl and Morphine while treating patients. The indictment alleges that Laut claimed to have given Fentanyl and Morphine to patients
that did not exist (phantom patients) or to patients that did not receive Fentanyl or Morphine.
Counts 36 and 37 allege that Laut concealed his theft of Fentanyl and Morphine by utilizing the name of a former doctor at Memorial Hospital on a narcotics log as authorization for the administering of Fentanyl and Morphine, when none was actually administered.
Wire fraud as charged in Counts 1 through 6 each carry a possible penalty of up to 20 years of imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,00, followed by up to 3 years of supervised release.
False statements as alleged in Counts 7-35 each carry a possible penalty of up to 5 years of imprisonment, a fine of up to $250,00, followed by up to 3 years of supervised release.
Aggravated identity theft as alleged in Counts 36 and 37 each carry a mandatory 2 years of imprisonment consecutive to any other sentence, a fine of up to $250,000, followed by one year of supervised release.
Trial has been set in the United States District Court in East St. Louis on March 27, 2017.
An indictment is a formal charge against a defendant. Under the law, a defendant is presumed to be innocent of a charge until proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt to the satisfaction of a jury.
The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Sparta, Illinois Police Department and Diversion Investigators of the Drug Enforcement Administration. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Ranley R. Killian.
MedStar Ambulance of Sparta, Illinois, and Memorial Hospital participated in the investigation.