LV doctor convicted in fraud case to keep license

Las Vegas surgeon Mark Kabins, a convicted felon, reached a settlement Friday with the state Board of Medical Examiners that will allow him to continue practicing medicine.

Kabins, one of three defendants in a federal fraud case, pleaded guilty last year to "misprision of felony" and was sentenced to probation. The charge involves a failure to report criminal activity.

The felony conviction prompted the medical board to file a formal complaint against Kabins in February. It accused Kabins of engaging in conduct "that brings the medical profession into disrepute," engaging in conduct that "is intended to deceive," and sustaining a conviction for an offense "involving moral turpitude."

Kabins has been licensed to practice medicine in Nevada since 1992.

John Hunt, one of Kabins' lawyers, called the settlement "fair and measured."

"This allows Dr. Kabins to continue without interruption his ability to provide the invaluable surgical services to the citizens of the State of Nevada," Hunt wrote in an e-mail.

According to the medical board's complaint, Kabins acknowledged facts in his federal plea agreement that indicate "he knew of mail or wire fraud committed by others against a former patient of his, and that he concealed material information about the crime, and that he did not as soon as possible make known the crime to a proper legal authority."

Kabins' conviction was the first in the 2007 fraud case involving allegations that a network of Las Vegas doctors and lawyers cheated clients out of honest services by protecting doctors from malpractice lawsuits and sharing kickbacks from legal settlements. Kabins became a defendant in the case in March 2009, when he was charged with conspiracy and fraud.

The surgeon's plea agreement in the criminal case required him to perform 250 hours of community service and to pay $3.5 million to a former patient, Melodie Simon, who became a paraplegic after he and another surgeon operated on her in 2000.

Kabins' settlement with the medical board requires him to perform another 500 hours of community service and to make a $5,000 donation to charity. In addition, he must pay nearly $8,000 for the costs of the board's investigation.

Hunt said the surgeon could face a six-month suspension of his license if he fails to comply with the terms of probation in his criminal case.

Simon recently wrote a letter to the board in which she expressed her support for Kabins, whom she described as a "decent man" and a "dedicated doctor."

"If asked, I would tell members of the media that the Board has righted a wrong," she wrote. "He was not responsible for what happened to me."

Contact reporter Carri Geer Thevenot at or 702-384-8710.