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BOSTON � A federal judge sentenced a former pharmaceutical executive to five months of prison, five months of house arrest and a $3,000 fine for committing perjury in a fraud case. Judge George A. O’Toole Jr. sentenced Joanne Richardson on Oct. 30 for statements she made during a December 2000 grand jury appearance. Richardson was convicted in January 2004. United States v. Richardson, No. 02-10211 (D. Mass.) Richardson’s former employer, TAP Pharmaceuticals Inc., agreed in 2001 to pay the government $875 million to settle charges of fraudulent drug pricing and marketing. The government alleged that the company paid kickbacks to hospitals in a conspiracy to defraud Medicare and Medicaid. A different judge initially sentenced Richardson to six months imprisonment followed by two years of supervised release, including four months of home detention, but referred the matter to a different judge when Richardson requested resentencing. In a memo requesting a lower sentence, Richardson’s attorneys noted President George Bush’s commutation of Lewis “Scooter” Libby’s 30-month prison sentence for perjury and obstruction of justice, and a couple of perjury cases involving former Massachusetts officials that involved sentencing that departed from federal guidelines. Max Stern, of Boston’s Stern Shapiro Weissberg & Garin, said his client has gone through a seven-year-ordeal, and she has two children and a terminally ill father. “If the president could determine that in the case of someone who obstructed justice in a national security situation didn’t need to go to jail because they suffered enough, [my client] should not have to go to jail,” Stern said.

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