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Grassley Says Health Secretary Sebelius Has Ignored Warnings About Fly-By-Night Drug Stores That Rip Off the Government

ABC News has reported that federal health officials have failed to police the emergence of phantom pharmacies fly-by-night storefront operations that bill millions of dollars in false Medicare bills and then vanish -- according to Sen. Charles Grassley.

The Iowa Republican wrote to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Monday to ask why complaints about what he termed "phantom pharmacies" have repeatedly gone unanswered by her agency.

" In recent months, one private insurer approached my office with concerns over the lack of responsiveness by HHS when presented with credible evidence that fraudulent pharmacies were defrauding Medicare," Grassley wrote.

"These pharmacies included empty store fronts, apparently without customers, that nonetheless billed millions of dollars to private insurers."