Rehan “Ray” Zuberi, 48, who owned Diagnostic Imaging Affiliates in Hackensack, Englewood, Wayne, Jersey City and elsewhere, was sentenced last week to eight years in state prison after pleading guilty to his role as the leader of a multimillion-dollar scheme that paid doctors up to $150 a pop to refer their patients to imaging centers.
The state Attorney General’s Office agreed to write a letter to immigration authorities recommending that Zuberi not be deported after striking a plea deal in June 2015 that secured Zuberi’s cooperation. But Zuberi never requested such a letter — and now he’s lost his chance, a spokesperson for the Attorney General’s Office said.
Felix Roque, the mayor of West New York and a doctor who was acquitted of accepting bribes from Zuberi, wrote in a letter to President Donald Trump, “I ask you to be consistent in your policies and insist that this criminal be deported. To enact a policy [that] punishes law-abiding young immigrants who up to now have done everything that the law has asked them to do…while at the same time rewarding criminals who have thumbed their nose at our criminal justice system is inconsistent, erratic and immoral,” he wrote.
Zuberi has pleaded guilty — twice — to money-laundering charges stemming from major Medicaid fraud investigations, and been accused of cheating the taxpayer-funded program of millions of dollars. His first guilty pleas, in 1999, led to a six-year sentence for his role in a scam that billed Medicaid for blood tests that had not been ordered.
After Zuberi’s 2014 arrest for his role in the imaging scheme, an immigration spokesman said at the time that he was being held at the immigration detention facility in Elizabeth. “He is in removal proceedings and has been scheduled for an immigration hearing before an immigration judge,” the spokesman said at that time. “Zuberi is a convicted aggravated felon as a result of an April 30, 1999, theft offense.” The resolution of those proceedings could not be determined.
Sentencing for a separate insurance fraud case, involving inflated bills for repairs to medical equipment, has been rescheduled for Sept. 29.
Zuberi received less than the standard 10 years because he provided evidence against seventeen of the doctors and chiropractors he admitted bribing.