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  1. #1
    Roses's Avatar
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    Four Convicted in $24M Medicare Scam Fri

    Apr 7, 11:55 PM ET


    Four people were convicted of federal fraud charges for submitting more than $24 million in false bills to Medicare, including one person who used the proceeds to buy a Rolls-Royce, a yacht and other luxury items, federal prosecutors said Friday.

    In the scheme, people were recruited from the local Vietnamese and Korean communities for medical examinations with the two doctors, who prescribed nutrition products and motorized wheelchairs that weren't needed and, in most cases, were never provided, prosecutors said.

    Participants billed Medicare for $24 million in equipment and nutrition products and Medicare paid about $15 million in claims, prosecutors said.

    During the three-week trial, prosecutors argued that Phu Luong, 51, operated United Medical Supply in Huntington Beach as a front to fraudulently bill Medicare for the wheelchairs and liquid nutrition products for patients who rely on feeding tubes.

    Luong, Sareth Tath, 56, of Long Beach; Mo Thi Pham, 50, of Westminster and Peter Kim, 82, of Los Angeles, were convicted Thursday.

    Luong also was convicted on five counts of money laundering for using the proceeds to buy a $185,575 yacht, a $118,000 Rolls-Royce, and putting a $1.7 million down payment on a mansion in Huntington Beach, among other items.

    The defendants were among 10 people indicted last March on health care fraud. Four other defendants have pleaded guilty.

    Authorities launched the probe into United Medical Supply after noticing it was submitting a large number of claims, almost all of them prescribed by Derrick Hubbard and Matthew Khatibloo.

    The two doctors fled the country after they were indicted. Hubbard, 46, was arrested in South Africa, while Khatibloo, 72, fled to Iran and remains a fugitive.


    Copyright © 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. The information contained in the AP News report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press.


    Copyright © 2006 Yahoo! Inc. All rights reserved.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060408/...N5bnN1YmNhdA--
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    A Smile

    A smile cost nothing, but gives so much.

    It enriches those who receive it,
    without making poorer those who give.
    It takes but a moment, but the memory
    of it sometimes lasts forever.

    None is so rich or mighty that he
    can get along without it,
    and none is so poor but that
    he can be made rich by it.

    A smile creates happiness in the home,
    fosters goodwill in business,
    and is the countersign of friendship.

    It brings rest to the weary,
    cheer to the discouraged, sunshine to the sad,
    and it is nature's best antidote for trouble.

    Yet it cannot be bought, begged, borrowed,
    or stolen, for it is something that is of no
    value to anyone until it is given away.

    Some people are too tired to give you a smile.
    Give them one of yours, as none needs a smile
    so much as he who has no more to give.

    - author unknown

  2. #2
    Retdetsgt's Avatar
    Retdetsgt is offline How did I get here!
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    One more reason I don't want socialized medicine here for everyone. A private insurance company would have never let a fraud get that big. Only civil servants who's spending tax payer money are lackadaisical enough to let that happen.
    When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)

    "A burning desire for social justice is never a substitute for knowing what you're talking about". -Thomas Sowell-

  3. #3
    Garda's Avatar
    Garda is offline Policing with nothing but a smile
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    Well if you have the doctor, the pharmacy and the supposed patient all in on the scam its not going to bee obvious initially.

    And hey, we are that tax payers money!!!
    Quote Originally Posted by TXCharlie
    Hey thanks Garda - I did think of you last night as I was lying in bed

  4. #4
    Retdetsgt's Avatar
    Retdetsgt is offline How did I get here!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garda
    Well if you have the doctor, the pharmacy and the supposed patient all in on the scam its not going to bee obvious initially.

    And hey, we are that tax payers money!!!
    I would strongly suspect a private insurance company would have picked up the fact all this was going to only two patients though.....

    Maybe other governments are more careful with money, but ours sucks! That goes for the federal, state and locals. They piss away money all the time that a private organization would never allow to happen.
    When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)

    "A burning desire for social justice is never a substitute for knowing what you're talking about". -Thomas Sowell-

  5. #5
    Magnum440 is offline Older Than Dirt
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    I am currently working in the Special Investigation Unit for an insurance company. Fraud is an $80 billion, yes, billion dollar a year industry directed toward the private insurance companies. It is estimated of all claims submitted, approximately 10% have some element of fraud contained in them.

    Examples: Exaggerated injury, exaggerated property damage, staged traffic accidents, arson, inflated medical bills, swoop and squat accidents, etc. The problem is polls have been taken from the general public, and a large percentage of people say it is acceptable to include your deductible in your claim damages, inflate your claim beyond the deductible, take extra time off from work even though the injured party can return, and it goes on.

    A lot of States require all companies have an SIU if they operate in that particular State. Some States have their own SIU departments, some don't. Fraud laws are all over the board across the nation. Some stringent, some lax, some no fraud law at all.

    There are immunity laws in some States that allow insurance companies and law enforcement to share their respective files. Some police departments, usually in larger cities have a separate fraud unit, some are casually interested, and others not at all interested in pursing any action.

    Local prosesutors want any referrals wrapped up in a pretty red ribbon, when a lot of times our insurance cases are built up around strong circumstantial evidence, which can often suffice if pursued. But, there are time constraints involved due to laws dictating what an insurance company can and cannot do.

    In my current position, I have received more death threats than while serving as an LEO. You folks just wouldn't believe some claims that are received by claims people. The adjuster has to recognize red flags in any claim before it is referred to their respective SIU. But, red flags do not always indicate fraud, but just the possibility.

    In any SIU investigation, our investigation can go on for 2-3 years, building our case. It is very time consuming. Meanwhile, the adjuster has his claim file responsibilities to adhere to under each States "unfair claims practice act."

    My job is somewhat easier due to the fact a lot of SIU people are retired LEOs, and there is a closeness still carried over. We recognize each others problems.

    So, bottom line is, if you ever receive a call from an SIU person, that call is not about some minor thing. Most of the SIU people due to our background know what you people are dealing with everyday. Just have patience with our questions. You all are working the criminal end, we are working the civil end, but both aiming at the same goal.
    Facta non verba
    "The good Lord set definite limits on man's wisdom, but set no limits on his stupidity — and that's not fair!" — Konrad Adenauer,

 

 

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