WASHINGTON (TIP): Four Indian Americans, including a physician and three co-owners of a health clinic from Chicago area, have been charged with healthcare fraud estimated to be running into millions of dollars. Federal law enforcement officials said three Indian Americans Ankur Roy, Akash Patel and Dipen Desai owned and operated Selectcare Health Inc., that provided outpatient physical and respiratory therapy in Park Ridge and Skokie.
They were charged with submitting more than $4 million in false billings to Medicare between March and July 2011. Roy, 36, of Miami was arrested Tuesday, June 11 in south Florida, while Patel, 33, of Morton Grove, and Desai, 33, of Chicago, will be ordered to appear for arraignment on a later date in US District Court in Chicago. According to the indictment, the three allegedly submitted $4,009,094 in false billings for services that were purportedly provided between April 2010 and April 2011, resulting in payments totaling approximately $2,214,424 from Medicare and $320,881 from Blue Cross
Blue Shield. The indictment seeks forfeiture of $2,535,305 in alleged fraud proceeds, including $446,974 in funds withdrawn by cashiers’ checks that were seized by the FBI in July 2012. In a second case Dr. Nalini Ahluwalia, 58, was charged with one count of violating the anti-kickback law for allegedly receiving $1,000 in exchange for referring two patients to a home health care agency in Aug 2012.
The four are among 89 people charged with healthcare fraud running into about $233 million in false billing after a nationwide strike in eight cities, according to federal authorities. All the four Indian Americans charged are from the Chicago area. The charges demonstrate that “we will not tolerate medical professionals and providers who abuse our healthcare system,” said Gary S. Shapiro, US Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois.