Hamada Makarita, 51, of Oakton was sentenced April 12 to two years and one month in federal prison, followed by a term of supervised release for using his position as a dentist to illegally distribute prescription medication and for using the identity of another dentist to fraudulently bill an insurance company for more than $160,000 in claims.
On Nov. 16, 2012, after a multi-week trial, Makarita was found guilty by a jury on multiple counts, including conspiracy, health care fraud, aggravated identity theft, and five counts of dispensing controlled substances.
According to court records and evidence at trial, Makarita owns and operates a dental practice in Oakton and advertised online at www.fixasmile.com.
Court records state that from about 2007 to 2012, Makarita illegally distributed and dispensed prescription medicine, including Fentanyl, Vicodin, and Valium to patients, employees, and at least one girlfriend, all without a legitimate dental purpose and “beyond the bounds of a dental practice.”
Court documents state that Makarita would distribute prescription pills to patients and at least one girlfriend in social settings and for sexual purposes. In his plea agreement Makarita admitted to taking explicit photographs of an unconscious girlfriend who was under the influence of alcohol and Vicodin.
In addition to these crimes, the jury found that Makarita provided more than $160,000 in services to his family members and billed them to an insurance provider in violation of the provider’s contract. He billed the services under the name of another dentist who did not practice in Makarita’s office at that time. Makarita received more than $91,000 in reimbursement from the provider for these fraudulent claims.
Fairfax County fire officials say a hot riding mower caused $231,000 in damage to a Fairfax home.
Officials said firefighters responded to a house fire April 10 at approximately 12:30 p.m. in the Fairfax Center area of Fairfax County. The single-family home is located in the 5100 block of Pheasant Ridge Road.
Firefighters said they encountered heavy smoke and fire coming from the garage area and rear of the two-story home upon their arrival. The fire was brought under control in approximately 45 minutes.
Firefighters said the fire started on the outside of home and quickly spread, igniting the siding of the home.
Officials said a single adult male occupant was home when the fire broke out and escaped unharmed. Red Cross support was offered but declined. Three firefighters received non-life-threatening injuries; one was flown to the Washington Hospital Burn Center.
According fire investigators, the fire was accidentally caused by the hot exhaust of a riding lawn tractor igniting nearby dry ground cover.
Douglas Lee Payne Jr., 31, of Fairfax pleaded guilty in federal court April 8 to three child exploitation-related charges.
According to court documents, Payne pleaded guilty to two counts of production of child pornography, which each carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 25 years and a maximum penalty of 50 years in prison. Court records say the sentence has been enhanced due to a prior conviction of using a computer to solicit a minor in Fairfax County. Payne also pleaded guilty to one count of attempted enticement of a minor, which carries a mandatory minimum of 10 years and a maximum of life in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for July 5, 2013.
According to court documents, during the investigation of a Fairfax County probation violation in December 2011, electronic communications between Payne and a minor victim in Indiana and another minor victim in Pennsylvania were discovered. In text messages and online chats, Payne requested that the minor victims send him nude images of themselves. Payne also instructed the minor females on how to pose in various sexually revealing positions. Payne possessed at least one child pornography image of each minor victim which they had sent in response to his request. Payne and the minor victim located in Indiana also had specific conversations about Payne going to Indiana and having sex with her there. On Dec. 28, 2011, while Payne was on his way to Indiana, he was instructed to return home for a meeting with his Fairfax County probation officer.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epdemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.
For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.