For Role in $5.2 Million Medicare Fraud Scheme
WASHINGTON – A Houston-area nurse was sentenced today in Houston for her participation in a $5.2 million Medicare fraud scheme, announced the Department of Justice, the FBI and the Department of Health and Human Service (HHS).
Ezinne Ubani, the former director of nursing at Family Healthcare Group, a Houston home health care company, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Nancy Atlas in the Southern District of Texas to 97 months in prison, followed by three years supervised release. Ubani was ordered to pay $2.5 million in restitution jointly and severally with her codefendants. Ubani was convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and two counts of making false statements following a May 2011 trial.
According to the evidence presented at trial and in court documents, Family Healthcare Group purported to provide skilled nursing to Medicare beneficiaries. Family Healthcare Group paid co-conspirators to recruit Medicare beneficiaries for the purpose of filing claims with Medicare for skilled nursing that was medically unnecessary and/or not provided. The evidence showed that Ezinne Ubani falsified documents to support the fraudulent payments. After the Medicare beneficiaries were recruited, other co-conspirators fraudulently signed plans of care stating that the beneficiaries needed home health care when in fact they knew the beneficiaries were not home-bound and not in need of skilled nursing.
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