A Burbank couple was among seven people charged Thursday in a Medi-
Cal fraud scheme that bilked $500,000 from the state, authorities
Glendale doctors Armen Kazanchian, 46, Noune Pashinian, 41, and
Vahan Madatovian, 46, are each charged with one count of grand theft
with special allegations, eight counts of Medi-Cal fraud, seven
counts of identity theft and two counts of money laundering, said
Collin Wong, director of the state bureau of Medi-Cal fraud and
The three doctors, who practiced from their respective offices on
Central, El Rito and Pacific avenues, were charged along with Robert
Khatchatrian, 48, of Burbank, Asmik Aroutiounian, 45, also of
Burbank, Norik Yeghisian, 55, of Glendale, and Vagharshak Pilossyan,
of Sherman Oaks. Pilossyan, also a doctor, ran a practice on
Riverside Drive in Sherman Oaks.
The case is significant because of the involvement of the four
board-certified doctors, Wong said.
“They should have been able to make a viable living,” Wong said.
“But they gave in to their greed and avarice.”
Aroutiounian and Khatchatrian, who are married, are accused of
running MTC Pharmacy in Van Nuys as a front for their fraud ring from
July 2000 to April 2001, Wong said. The four doctors reportedly
issued prescriptions to the pharmacy with their patients’
information. In turn, the pharmacy allegedly billed Medi-Cal, but did
not buy the prescriptions.
Yeghisian, who was reportedly employed as the pharmacy’s office
manager, is accused of taking the profits of MTC Pharmacy and
laundering it through a second company, Royal Caviar.
Aroutiounian and Khatchatrian have fled the country, Wong said,
and are believed to be in Armenia.
The bureau is in the process of arranging self-surrender for the
other five suspects with their attorneys, Wong said.
“Too often this area of crime is overlooked and dismissed because
it’s perceived as a victimless crime,” Wong said. “But the financial
burden for health-care fraud lands on the shoulders of the people of