Nevada Supreme Court overturns 2nd-degree murder conviction against physician linked to Las Vegas hepatitis C outbreak — 4 insights

The Nevada Supreme Court overturned a second-degree murder conviction against the late Dipak Desai, MD, who was imprisoned for his role in a 2007 hepatitis C outbreak in Las Vegas, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.

Here's what you should know:

1. Dr. Desai was the founder of Gastroenterology Center of Nevada and Endoscopy Center of South Nevada. In 2007, seven people contracted hepatitis C after two of the centers' registered nurse anesthetists injected people using contaminated needles. The federal government has since shut down the centers.

Two men died because of complications from the disease. The family of one patient pursued criminal charges, although that man refused treatment for his hepatitis C from two physicians.

2. Dr. Desai was sentenced to life in prison for his role in the man's death in 2013. On July 27, the Nevada Supreme Court overturned his second-degree murder conviction. Justice James Hardesty wrote the infected man didn't die as a result of Dr. Desai's actions, but as a result of his own failure to pursue treatment.

Mr. Hardesty also noted Dr. Desai did not administer the injections, nullifying the murder conviction.

3. The court upheld several other criminal counts against Dr. Desai including reckless disregard, criminal neglect, theft and obtaining money under false pretenses.

4. Dr. Desai died in prison in April 2017.

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