Long prison sentence upheld for doctor who hurt patients


DETROIT, Mich. (AP) — A federal appeals court has affirmed a nearly 20-year prison sentence for a doctor who performed unnecessary spinal surgeries in California and Michigan.

Prosecutors referred to the procedures as “plain butchery.”

Aria Sabit pleaded guilty to conspiracy and fraud but argued that the sentence was excessive.

He had a financial stake in Apex Medical Technologies and made money when he used its spinal devices. He worked at Community Memorial Hospital in Ventura, California, until moving to suburban Detroit in 2011.

The appeals court noted that some patients are permanently disabled after seeing Sabit.