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Murder convict dies in prison


DIPAK DESAI PHOTO20170422143632_l

LAS VEGAS, CA — A once-prominent Indian American physician in Las Vegas, Nevada, who was convicted of murder and 26 other charges in the largest hepatitis outbreak in Nevada history, has died in prison custody.

A state corrections official said on April 11 that Dipak Desai was 67 when he died on April 10 at Renown Regional Medical Center in Reno, prisons spokeswoman Brooke Keast said.

He was sentenced in July 2013 to 18 years to life in state prison on charges that included neglect of patients and insurance fraud. He was serving a nearly six-year concurrent federal prison sentence after pleading guilty before trial to health care fraud and conspiracy.

He had been transferred April 2 from the medical facility at Northern Nevada Correctional Center in Carson City. An autopsy was scheduled to determine a cause of death.

Desai’s lawyer, Richard Wright, maintained for years that Desai was in such poor health after several strokes that he was unfit for trial on criminal charges stemming from the outbreak.

Desai agreed in 2014 to repay $2.2 million to insurance companies and the federal government. But he had given up his medical license and declared bankruptcy when the outbreak became public.

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