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Society

Greek Phony Doc Charged in Patient Deaths Sued for Bilking Businessman

ATHENS — A man arrested for posing as a doctor, with three patients dying, has now been sued on charges of taking 55 million euros ($61.88 million) from a Greek businessman between 2005-07 after claiming to have contacts with the United States government.

Neither were named, nor was it explained why the businessman waited 13 years to make his claim or why he had given the money to the man without earlier suing or going to the police for help.

In the lawsuit filed by the businessman, the 47-year-old phony doctor claimed that he was acting on a decision of the US government to establish a firm that would sell telecoms equipment to countries and conceal American involvement, a story the duped man bought.

Kathimerini said the man called himself Nikos Kontos and reportedly deceived more than  40 patients with serious or terminal illnesses. Three, including two minors, died in his care but it wasn’t explained if they had been treated at a hospital or if the phony doctor had a phony license as well, his name withheld to protect his privacy despite the deaths.

He was said to have given his patients fake cures but it wasn’t said how long he had been practicing falsely nor where the office was located or if he had ties with hospitals or what medications had been prescribed nor if he had a license to do so.

He was allegedly involved in at least 45 cases of deception, posing as a medical specialist with various false claims that included being an Air Force medic, a U.S.-trained pediatric oncologist, and an executive member of the International Red Cross, police said.

Many of his treatments involved the use of cannabis-based substances, handed out of unwitting patients who thought smoking marijuana would cure them. It didn’t.

The three who died, allegedly due to failure of receiving proper treatment, were aged 14, 16, and 76 and he billed them a total of 58,000 euros ($65,043) but it wasn’t said either if they had state or private insurance and why he wasn’t caught through billing examinations.

The suspect, who has no genuine medical qualifications, was facing charges of manslaughter, fraud, and the production and use of counterfeit documents, and trafficking banned substances. It wasn’t said if he’s being held or out on bail or otherwise.

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