U.S. Attorney Ilan T. Graff, acting under authority conferred by 28 USC § 515, announced today that cardiologist ASIM HAMEEDI was sentenced to 20 months in prison for orchestrating a widespread health fraud scheme since 2003 until approximately 2015. a medical clinic in Queens, New York, City Medical Associates (“CMA”), through which he perpetrated a fraud scheme involving, among other things, fraudulent reimbursement claims and false statements to insurers about evidence and procedures doctors. HAMEEDI previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit health care fraud before U.S. District Judge John G. Koeltl, who imposed the sentence today.
Mr Graff said: “Doctors and medical clinics should focus on the well-being of their patients, not on fraudulently lining their own pockets. Thanks to the hard research work of our partners in the FBI, HHS and NYPD, Asim Hameedi goes to jail for swindling Medicare, Medicaid and private health insurance companies. “
According to the indictment, other court records and statements made in public court proceedings:
CMA, a cardiology and neurology clinic based in Bayside, Queens, conducted a multifaceted scheme spanning approximately 12 years involving millions of dollars in counterfeit claims. HAMEEDI, a board-certified interventional cardiologist, was president and owner of CMA. As HAMEEDI has acknowledged, he was the leader of this long-running fraud scheme, which involved several conspirators and several defenders of the code.
HAMEEDI’s health fraud scheme includes, among other things: (1) making false statements to insurance providers about patients’ symptoms in order to obtain pre-authorization for medical tests and procedures; (2) reverse invoices to create the false impression that medical procedures had not been conducted until after CMA received “prior” authorization from an insurer; (3) filing false claims with insurance providers for parts of evidence that have not been performed, as well as for drug items that are not used or provided; (4) evade the scrutiny of insurers by the large volume of claims filed by CMA in falsely representing that several physicians — who did not work at CMA — had ordered or performed tests or procedures there; and (5) violate HIPAA by accessing, without authorization, electronic patient health records at a specific hospital in Long Island, New York, in order to identify patients who will be recruited to CMA. In addition, HAMEEDI attempted to obstruct an investigation by hospital officials for the misconduct of his nephew, code defendant Fawad Hameedi.
In addition to his prison sentence, HAMEEDI, 50, of New York City, was sentenced to two years of supervised release, restitution of $ 554,331 and a fine of $ 100,000.
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Fawad Hameedi, 35, pleaded guilty on February 7, 2018 to a conspiracy to commit fraud in the healthcare field.
Arif Hameedi, 59, pleaded guilty on February 6, 2018 to a conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Absar Haaris, 51, pleaded guilty on November 15, 2016 to conspiracy to commit health fraud and bank fraud, health fraud, false statements regarding health issues, conspiracy to commit fraud related to identifying information, theft of aggravated identity, conspiracy to violate anti-return status, conspiracy to commit money laundering and conspiracy to obtain and improperly disclose individually identifiable health information. Haaris was previously sentenced by the Honorable Jed S. Rakoff, mostly on full-time, three-year supervised release and restitution of $ 544,331.51.
Michelle Landoy, 40, pleaded guilty on January 29, 2018 to conspiracy to commit fraud and health fraud, health fraud, fraud, false statements related to health matters, conspiracy to commit fraud in connection with identifying information and aggravated identity theft.
Desiree Scott, 41, pleaded guilty on February 6, 2018 to conspiracy to commit health fraud and fraud, health fraud, fraud, misrepresentation related to health matters, conspiracy to commit fraud in connection with identifying information and aggravated identity theft.
Mr. Graff praised the outstanding investigative work of the New York Local Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the New York Regional Office of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services of the Inspector General, and the New York City Police Department. Graff also thanked the New York State Department of Financial Services.
The Office’s Complex Fraud and Cybercrime Unit handles this criminal case. U.S. Deputy Attorneys Michael D. Neff, David M. Abramowicz and Kristy J. Greenberg are in charge of the indictment.