A pharmacist trapped by the “king’s pharmacy”

News 10 February, 2018
  • Photo Pierre-Paul Poulin
    The pharmacist Athanasios Kouremenos testified yesterday before the disciplinary Board of the professional order. He pleaded guilty to 44 heads
    of the offence.

    Hugo Duchaine

    Saturday, 10 February, 2018 01:00

    Saturday, 10 February, 2018 01:00

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    A former associate of the deposed “king of the pharmacy” shall be liable to a cancellation of the 18-month and 25 $ 500 fine for him to have used nominee.

    “With [Jonathan-Yan] Perreault, I felt untouchable […] I thought I would be a part of something that could assure me my future “, told in tears and the pharmacist Athanasios Kouremenos before the disciplinary Board of the College of pharmacy yesterday.

    It has been the subject of an investigation by his professional order in the wake of the revelations of the Journal on his ex-partner. Jonathan-Yan Perreault, nicknamed the ” king’s pharmacy “, was the owner of 40 pharmacies, including several with nominees under the Uniprix banner. He himself has been disbarred for almost 32 years last year.

    Athanasios Kouremenos pleaded guilty yesterday to 44 heads of offence, in particular, have received rebates and claims illegal. He has lied to the Order in not saying that he was the owner of 40% of its pharmacy Montreal.

    Blind trust

    He has admitted to having a blind trust in Mr. Perreault in partnering with him in 2014, by signing a convention nominee without even being represented by a lawyer or a notary.

    “Everyone told me that it was okay, that I was’backé and that everyone is doing it “, testified the pharmacist before the discipline Council, adding they have signed these documents at the registered office of Uniprix with leaders of the company.

    Everything was arranged and negotiated by the team of Mr. Perreault. Mr. Kouremenos has not even met the seller of the pharmacy of which he became co-owner. He had been in contact with an associate of Mr. Perreault by another pharmacist in business with him.

    Mr Kouremenos said he thought he ” was looking for young pharmacists to expand its network of […], who did not have the money to buy one “.

    98 000 $ in rebates

    The syndicates of the College of pharmacists, Lynda Chartrand, explained that the purchase of the pharmacy involved is also the supplier of medicines McKesson.

    By taking part in its compliance program, the drug offered a financial assistance of $ 215,000, and the pharmacy was in consideration purchase of 95% of its drug to McKesson, she said.

    The pharmacist receiving on professional allowances additional McKesson. At the time, pharmacists were legally entitled to 15 %, but the company offered up to double. Mr. Kouremenos has pocketed nearly $98,000.

    The pharmacist has also acknowledged having made several false prescriptions. Just like the ” king’s pharmacy “, he used the name of Dr Andre Berdnikoff without his consent.

    In confessions, the writings being transmitted to the syndicates, Mr. Kouremenos admits to have done those requirements, that it demanded a insurance plan, in ” order to increase the profits of the pharmacy “.

    Lynda Chartrand pointed out that the pharmacist had offered him an excellent cooperation in its investigation. This last, very emotional throughout the hearing, also expressed his “profound sadness” while accepting his share of responsibility for the acts committed.

    ► The Board of discipline took the cause under advisement and will render its decision on sanction within three months.