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Fla. healthcare executive found guilty in $1B Medicare fraud case
The fraud also included paying off a regulator to learn when inspectors would make surprise visits to his facilities, or if patients had made complaints. Although Esformes' attorney told jurors the executive never paid kickbacks, they ultimately convicted him for the kickbacks, money laundering, bribery and obstruction of justice.
Jurors were undecided on six additional counts, but prosecutors accepted the verdict rather than send them back for further deliberations. The jury could not decide whether Esformes was guilty of Medicare fraud conspiracy after four days of deliberations. They found him guilty of money laundering and of bribing a Florida health regulator to warn him when inspectors planned surprise visits to his facilities and when patients made complaints.
During the seven-week trial, a former University of Pennsylvania basketball coach also testified that he accepted bribes from Esformes to have his son admitted into the business college.
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Another coach implicated was recently suspended from Auburn University. That's part of his tragedy," Justice Department attorney James Hayes said during closing arguments.
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He also faked medical certifications, according to the indictment. It hurts every American taxpayer by raising the cost of health care.
Medicare Fraud Arrests: More Than 30 Busted in Miami in Nationwide Takedown
The raids come a week after a report that Miami-Dade County received more than half a billion dollars from Medicare in home health care payments intended for the sickest patients in , which is more than the rest of the country combined, according to a report by the Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Inspector General. In Detroit's raids, suspects paid recruiters to find patients willing to feign symptoms to justify expensive testing, including nerve conduction studies, federal authorities said.
The pilot strike force, which started in Miami in , has indicted more than suspects in Medicare fraud scams. The program is now in Los Angeles, Houston and Detroit.
Feds arrest 26 in $61 million Medicare fraud
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This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Show discussion. A telephone listing for Dweck could not be found and it was unclear if he had a lawyer. Discuss: Discussion comments.