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Medicare Fraud

September 19, 2008 | Scott Glover, Times Staff Writer
For an ex-con fresh out of Chino State Prison, Donald Noyola seemed to be wildly exceeding expectations -- on paper, anyway. Noyola was listed as president, secretary and chief financial officer of Sycamore Medical Supply Co. in Los Angeles, a small firm so busy that it billed Medicare for more than $1.3 million in reimbursements over nine months last year, court records show.
August 7, 2008 | Cara Mia DiMassa, Richard Winton and Rich Connell, Times Staff Writers
On a Sunday afternoon two years ago, five homeless people being dropped off on Los Angeles' skid row by an ambulance caught the attention of police officers. The officers videotaped what they thought was a case of hospitals dumping patients in a section of the city where few would notice or care.
July 9, 2008 | From Times Wire Reports
Sellers of wheelchairs, drugs and other medical supplies collected as much as $93 million in fraudulent Medicare claims based on prescriptions from doctors who were dead, some for more than 10 years, a congressional investigation has found. Millions more dollars will be at risk of waste and fraud each year in the billion-dollar government-run health program for the elderly and disabled unless Medicare officials address flaws in procedures, the investigation said. The bipartisan report by the Senate Homeland Security investigations subcommittee, obtained by the Associated Press, reviewed millions of reimbursement claims for medical equipment and supplies from 2000 through 2007.
March 3, 2008 | Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Times Staff Writer
After a series of surprise inspections in Los Angeles County, Medicare fraud investigators found persistent corruption among medical equipment suppliers who set up phony offices that billed the government $21 million over one year, prompting officials to call for stronger enforcement efforts, according a report to be released today. Investigators checked 905 suppliers. Their offices should have been filled with wheelchairs, crutches, bedpans and other medical equipment.
January 8, 2008 | Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Times Staff Writer
Federal officials are expected to announce in Los Angeles today a nationwide effort to combat fraudulent Medicare billing by medical equipment suppliers in 70 urban areas. Such fraud in the federal healthcare program for the elderly has increased in recent years, particularly in the sprawling urban areas of Southern California and south Florida where many of the most vulnerable Medicare recipients live.
July 2, 2007 | Claudia Lauer and Jack Leonard, Times Staff Writers
Fraudulent Medicare billings submitted by medical equipment suppliers in the Los Angeles area and south Florida are the target of a pilot program to be announced today by the Department of Health and Human Services.
October 17, 2006 | Molly Selvin
A nurse convicted of defrauding Medicare of $40 million was sentenced to 46 months in prison by a Los Angeles federal judge. Lourdes Perez, 53, a registered nurse who once owned two of the largest home healthcare agencies in California, pleaded guilty in 2004 to fraud and filing false tax returns and agreed to cooperate with federal prosecutors.
April 8, 2006
A Huntington Beach man and three other people were convicted Friday in a $24-million healthcare billing scam. Phu Luong, 51, manager of United Medical Supply, received Medicare funds for unnecessary motorized wheelchairs and nutrition that patients often didn't receive, a federal jury found. Employees Sareth That, 56, of Long Beach, Mo Thi Pham, 50, of Westminster and Peter Kim, 82, of Los Angeles were also convicted. Sentencing for all four was set for July 10.
September 17, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Five Southern California healthcare providers have been indicted by a federal grand jury on charges that they billed Medicare more than $1.1 million for fraudulent exams. The group was reimbursed for tests and exams that were either not performed by a physician or not performed at all, according to the indictment. Two of those indicted have been arrested. Alexander Dzhuga, 27, of Encino and Vladimir Semenov, 47, of Sherman Oaks were scheduled to appear in U.S.
September 3, 2005 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
The operator of a Los Angeles ambulance service was sentenced Friday to nine years in federal prison for bilking Medicare out of more than $2.4 million through fabricated billings. Boris Shpirt, 51, co-owner of Greybor Medical Transportation, was also ordered to pay restitution in that amount to the government healthcare program. His wife, Jenny, 44, who supervised bookkeeping for the company, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for filing false income tax returns.
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