Ex-veterans hospital worker sentenced in theft of HIV meds

May 27, 2022 GMT

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — A former pharmacy technician involved in the theft of more than $8.2 million worth of prescription HIV medication from a Veterans Affairs hospital in northern New Jersey has been sentenced to nearly five years in federal prison.

Lisa Hoffman, 50, of Orange, had pleaded guilty last November to theft of government property. She worked at the hospital in East Orange, where she was responsible for ordering drugs and supplies for the site’s outpatient pharmacy and maintaining its inventory.

From October 2015 through November 2019, prosecutors said Hoffman used her position to steal prescription HIV medication from the hospital. She placed large orders for the medication, purportedly on behalf of the hospital, then stole it after it was delivered.

Hospital surveillance footage captured Hoffman regularly taking dozens of bottles of HIV medications from the pharmacy shelves and eventually putting them in her bag, then leave the hospital with the stolen medication, prosecutors have said.

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Hoffman would routinely meet with another conspirator and sell him the stolen medications for cash. The conspirator would then sell the medications to other people.

Hoffman received a 57-month sentence Thursday. She must pay $8.29 million in restitution and will have to forfeit of $450,000.