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      Utica physician charged with defrauding federal benefits programs

      Federal prosecutors have charged a 58-year-old physician from central New York with 19 fraud counts, accusing him of improperly billing federal benefit programs and private insurers $12 million for patient services.

      According to the indictment, Dr. Dilip Kachare (kah-SHAR'-ee) of Utica obtained payments from Medicare, Medicaid, and numerous insurers over a 10-year period by submitting reimbursement claims for an impossible volume of services for his internal medicine practice, including seeing 92 patients in one day.

      Authorities are seeking $12 million in restitution. Kachare was released after appearing in federal court Friday in Binghamton.

      Attorney Andrew Safranko (sah-FRANK-oh) says Kachare is one the hardest-working doctors he's ever met, the time codes used are only estimates, and they deny any wrongdoing.