DOJ Charges 601 Individuals in Department’s Largest Health Care Fraud Bust Ever

A recent crackdown on health care fraud by the United States Department of Justice led to over 600 arrests on federal fraud charges, including thirteen in the Tampa Bay area.

Per the Justice Department, last week’s arrests are collectively the organization’s largest health care fraud enforcement action to date. The Department arrested 601 individuals in 58 federal districts, including 165 licensed medical professionals, alleging a total of over $2 billion in fradulent billings.

Of the slate of arrested individuals, 162 suspects, 76 of whom are medical doctors, are charged with crimes involving the alleged fraudulent prescription and/or distribution of opioids or other illicit drugs.

The balance of the arrestees face charges of allegedly fraudulently billing Medicare, Medicaid, TRICARE, and various private insurers for prescription drugs or compounded medications, much of which the department alleges was never purchased or distributed to legitimate beneficiaries. Per the Justice Department, a significant amount of the drugs that were purchased but not distributed to legal recipients instead found their way into the hands of opioid addicts.

In other instances, the Justice Department claims that certain defendants submitted filings to state-administered or private health insurance providers for services that were not rendered. Though many of these defendants are medical professionals, a significant portion of them are (or were) themselves patients of allegedly unscrupulous medical professionals.

While the facts of these cases are unique unto themselves, which side of the line between perpetrator and victim a particular defendant falls is often difficult to convey to a jury. As a result, individuals who face such charges can maximize their chances for a favorable resolution by enlisting the aid of legal professionals who have a thorough understanding of and significant experience in the landscape of health care fraud law and practice.

The Law Offices of Bjorn Brunvand have been representing people charged with capital murder, felony drug charges, drunk driving, government fraud, and white-collar crimes for over a quarter century. Contact our office today to discuss your Tampa Bay-area state or federal charges.

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