Saturday, June 2, 2007

Former San Jose Medical Group manager stole patients' info

The former manager at San Jose Medical Group entered a guilty plea to charges that he stole computer equipment containing sensitive personal information, the U.S. Attorney's office said Thursday.

U.S. Attorney Scott N. Schools said Joseph Nathaniel Harris, 44, who now lives in Riverside, admitted stealing equipment in March 2005 that included a DVD with information on almost 200,000 patients in the San Jose area.

FBI agents recovered the DVD.

Harris was branch manager at the San Jose Medical Group, a medical services organization that includes hundreds of affiliated physicians in the South Bay, but left in September 2004. In March 2005, employees discovered computer equipment missing from the group's administrative office, including information on patients' names, addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, diagnoses, and medical procedures.

Harris is scheduled for sentencing in September and could face a maximum of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine or twice the gain or loss resulting from the theft (whichever is greater), three years supervised release, and restitution.

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