Kareem Ahmed claimed that Nancy Pelosi was his personal friend. But maybe it wasn’t as close as on her side.
The Orange County, Calif. District Attorney’s Office this week raided the offices of Landmark Medical Management, whose president and CEO, Kareem Ahmed, was one of the largest individual financial backers of President Obama’s 2012 re-election effort.
Officials with the district attorney’s office on Tuesday morning executed a search warrant at Landmark’s office in Ontario, Calif., according to a source who works at Landmark and was present during the raid. The exact nature of the district attorney’s investigation is unclear.
“After they gathered everybody in the main area of the building, yeah, there was just an announcement that they had a search warrant, we weren’t to touch anything work related, we weren’t to touch any type of phones, we weren’t allowed to leave the area until we were identified and questioned,” the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told TPM.
When TPM last interviewed Ahmed he didn’t react well. He reacted like a man with barrels of stuff to hide.
“Because the message I got from you, Eric, was, you have been hired by either the Republicans or by the competition, or somebody, just out to destroy me, without even knowing the facts,” he said. “So what would you do if you were in my shoes? So I’ve got the White House on notice. I’ve got everybody on notice. That all right, I can’t wait until this thing comes out, and we’re going to go after your publication, you, and whatever, and if there’s anything that’s defamatory, that’s not factual, oh yeah, I’m ready. We’re waiting. My employees are watching. My law firms are watching. I mean, they are watching you. Like, every move.”
Hope he’s still got the White House on speed dial.
Ahmed’s contributions to Obama, Democrats, and the outside spending groups that support them have totaled more than $1.1 million. Ahmed’s wife, Tayyaba Farhat, has contributed another $75,000.
For $1.1 million, you would think Barry could have kept the fuzz away from Kareem’s medical business.
Ahmed’s donations have allowed him to rub shoulders with many of the most powerful people in the country. He has been to high-priced fundraisers and events with Obama and the First Lady, including a headline-grabbing May 10 dinner with the President at the California home of the actor George Clooney.
“I hang out with governors, U.S. Senators, Nancy Pelosi is a personal friend,” Ahmed said. “OK, listen, a lot of people are my personal friends.”
During the first three months of the year, Ahmed’s checks represented more than 20 percent of Priorities’ 2012 fundraising haul.
So why did Ahmed need that much protection? We’ll find out the details soon enough, but…
Ahmed was reluctant to discuss the specifics of his business, particularly when it comes to the activities of his non-Landmark companies. There are at least six companies tied to Ahmed that are registered to various suites in the same building as Landmark: HNW Consulting Inc., Healthcare Finance Management LLC, Med-Rx Funding LLC, Physician Funding Solutions LLC, Pharmafinance LLC, and RX Funding Solutions LLC. The functions of these companies are unclear.
“[Landmark is] just one of a big chunk of operations that find manipulable loopholes,” Mark Rakich, a staff memberÂ for the California Assembly Insurance Committee, said in an interview. “One could debate whether some of the arrangements violate existing provisions of law.”
Several years ago, the workers’ compensation system in California experienced a sharp increase in the amount of compound drugs, primarily topical analgesics, prescribed to injured workers.
The study found that over that period, the percentage of California workers’ compensation prescription dollars that paid for the drugs associated with compounding rose from 0.8 percent to 6.4 percent. The State Compensation Insurance Fund, a quasi-governmental body and a big player in the system, saw billings for a range of items that were rarely billed before 2007 — including compound drugs — reach $58 million in a 16-month period. It was during this period that Landmark was founded.