COLUMBIA, S.C. — A man accused of stealing a South Carolina physician’s identity and treating patients by doing checkups and prescribing drugs pleaded guilty Tuesday.
Ernest Osei Addo, 51, stole the identity of a friend who was a doctor and worked for several medical clinics before his scheme was uncovered, authorities said. Police believe Addo, who was heavily in debt, was motivated by money.
Addo faces two years in prison and $250,000 in fines when he is sentenced in June.
He also faces state charges of practicing medicine without a license and illegally distributing controlled substances. His attorneys declined to comment.
Addo met Dr. Arthur Kennedy, of Orangeburg, at a political rally in Ghana, where both were born, according to federal authorities. In court Tuesday, Assistant US Attorney DeWayne Pearson said the men planned to open a medical clinic in the United States.
Kennedy gave Addo documentation of his own medical training but remained in Ghana to teach. Using Kennedy’s information, prosecutors said, Addo obtained a South Carolina driver’s license and created an online profile with a physician employment agency, which placed him for a short time at a job in Greenwood.