A Houston man has been sentenced to two years in jail, plus three years of supervised release and restitution of $480,000 to Medicare and Medicaid, according to the Department of Health and Human Services Inspector-General (HHS IG).
Forty-nine-year-old Kevin Washington was convicted last December at the end of a six-day trial during which jurors were shown evidence compiled by federal and state authorities of a defrauding scheme from 2003 to 2007.
Washington submitted multiple false referral charges for dialysis patients he sent to an ambulance transport service in Houston. He also conspired with others to obtain signatures from unsuspecting doctors on transport orders of patients who never actually went to nursing home in Sugar Land, Texas.
In another conviction announced today by the HHS IG, Eunice Sparrow, 68, and Uniecesco Smith, 30, both of Plaguemine, Louisiana, were sentenced to 14 months and 12 months and a day, respectively for Medicare fraud.
Both defendants pleaded guilty to participating in a scheme in which false reimbursement claims were submitted to Medicare for payment for items that were never provided to patients.
In a third case announced today by the HHS IG, a federal judge in Miami sentenced Billy Denica, 50, to three years and a month in federal prison for defrauding Medicare. Denica was also sentenced to two years of supervised release and ordered to pay $538,875 in restitution to the government.
Denica owned an assisted living facility and received kickbacks in return for referring residents to a fraudulent firm known as American Therapeutic Corp.(ATC). The latter claimed to provide intensive treatment for severe mental illness at seven locations throughout Florida.
Lesson: Don’t do the Medicare crime if you aren’t prepared to do the time and pay the fine!