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Seven Miami-Area Residents Charged in $11 Million Medicare Fraud Scheme
Date:4/2/2008

nt for Angel Rodriguez, Mateos and Gonzalez, assistants at Saint Jude, to pay cash kickbacks of approximately $100 to $150 per visit to HIV patients. In return for the kickbacks, patients signed logs stating that they had received the treatments that were billed to Medicare, when in fact the patients had not received the claimed treatments.

From June 2003 through November 2003, Saint Jude billed approximately $11 million to the Medicare program under the Medicare provider numbers of Dr. Alvarez and Dr. Orestes Alvarez-Jacinto, receiving more than $8 million in payments for HIV infusion services that were not actually provided and services that were not medically necessary.

Dr. Orestes-Alvarez Jacinto, a former doctor at Saint Jude, pleaded guilty in June 2007 to conspiracy to commit health care fraud and was sentenced in October 2007 to 18 months in prison. In a related case, Rita Campos Ramirez, the medical biller employed by Saint Jude, pleaded guilty in August 2007 to a $170 million conspiracy to commit health care fraud. Sentencing is scheduled for later today.

If convicted on all charges, Mariela Rodriguez, Perera and Delgado each face maximum prison sentences of 35 years. Alvarez faces a maximum prison sentence of 30 years while Angel Rodriguez, Mateos and Gonzalez each face maximum prison terms of 15 years.

An indictment is merely a charge and defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

This case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorneys Hank Bond Walther and John K. Neal of the Criminal Division's Fraud Section, with the investigative assistance of the FBI. The Medicare Strike Force is led by Deputy Chief Kirk Ogrosky of the Criminal Division's Fraud Section and the office of U.S. Attorney R. Alexander Acosta of the Southern District of Florida.


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SOURCE U.S. Department of Justice
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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