Federal Hep C Trial Date Now July, New Judge Due

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- A new judge will preside over a federal trial that has been pushed back to July 29 for a former Las Vegas physician and clinic owner already convicted in state court in a 2007 endoscopy clinic hepatitis outbreak.

U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro withdrew herself Thursday from the federal conspiracy and health care fraud case involving Dipak Desai and Desai's former business manager, Tonya Rushing.

A new judge wasn't immediately named.

Trial had been scheduled to begin last Monday -- more than six years after the hepatitis outbreak became public and almost three years since Desai and Rushing were indicted in federal court.

Both have pleaded not guilty.

Desai's attorney, Richard Wright, maintains that a series of strokes have left his client physically and mentally unfit for trial.


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