A year ago I reported — in May 2008 — that Michael Jackson might be moving to Pougheekpsie, New York.
Where? You’re scratching your head.
It should come as little shock now that Michael’s ex-on the road doctor, Neil Ratner, an anesthesiologist, lives in next door community Woodstock.
Ratner, it seems, had rented Jackson a home and planned on him being around the corner. If you recall, Michael had stalled out in Las Vegas, nearly lost Neverland to foreclosure, and didn’t know what to do with himself.
At the time, even Jackson’s closest associates could not imagine him living in Poughkeepsie.
But little by little stories are emerging about Ratner, a doctor who was suspended from practicing medicine for three years in 2002 as the result of an insurance fraud scheme that involved New York’obstetrician-gynecologist’Dr. Niels Lauersen, the ex-boyfriend of songwriter/socialitie Denise Rich.
Lauersen was famous in New York as a fertility doctor. But for patients without means, he billed their insurance companies for ob-gyn procedures, disguising invitro procedures.
According to New York Magazine:
The government’s star witness was Dr. Neil Ratner, Lauersen’s former anesthesiologist, who testified to a deliberate office policy of falsifying insurance forms. The prosecution knew Ratner would be a shaky witness, so the attorneys started the questioning by having him admit to dodging the draft, to being unable to get into an American med school, to dealing drugs, and to being “pretty stoned a lot of the time I was giving anesthesia,” once accidentally injecting himself with a paralyzing agent on the job. But to Lauersen, Ratner was like a patient, a person he could make well. “I took Ratner when nobody else would,” he says. “I made him a good person.”
During the Lauersen trial in 2000, Ratner refused to say whether he gave Jackson drugs on his 1996-97 tour. According’ to reports, when questioned under oath about drugs, Ratner shot back, “What’s your definition of drugs?”
‘More to come on Ratner, and the whole issue of mobile at-home anesthesiology.