A 54-year-old Wausau man is facing federal charges related to a fraud scheme involving the illegal distribution of prescription drugs.

Kenneth Zipperer is charged with mail fraud, wire fraud, dispensing prescription drugs without a license, and money laundering as part of a scheme involving an unlicensed pharmacy and the distribution of misbranded prescription drugs.

The 26-count indictment alleges that Zipperer, who worked as an insurance broker selling Medicare supplement health insurance policies to individuals age 65 or older, imported prescription drugs from India that were not approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in the United States and sold them to his health insurance clients.

The indictment alleges that Zipperer was not licensed to dispense or prescribe prescription drugs and that he used his company staff, computers, and office space to order prescription drugs from India, break down bulk shipments into quantities for individual clients, store the drug inventory, issues invoices for payment and deposit drug customer checks into the company’s business bank account.

The indictment also alleges Zipperer had his prescription drug customers pay him in cash to avoid a paper trail.

If convicted, Zipperer faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison on each of the five mail fraud charges, 10 wire fraud charges and the nine money laundering charges. The charge of dispensing prescription drugs without a license has maximum penalty or three years in federal prison.