Saturday, June 28, 2008

For Immediate Release
Wednesday, Jul 10, 2002

Washington, DC – U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) today continued his fight against corporate corruption in the marketplace by supporting the "Corporate and Criminal Fraud Accountability Act of 2002" sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT). His floor statement follows:

"Our publicly owned companies are an essential component to the economic health of our country. As we have seen over the past few months, the continued lapses of our corporate leaders, whether they are ethical, criminal or just plain ignorant, have a significant, sometimes crippling, effect on the welfare of our nation. We must make some fundamental changes in the current system of corporate oversight to protect Americans from avarice, greed, ignorance and criminal behavior. Now is the time for Congress to restore investor confidence and take the necessary action to protect the interests of the public shareholders and place those interests above the personal interests of those entrusted with managing and advising those companies. The deterioration of the checks and balances that safeguard the public against corporate abuses must be reversed.

"We have to address the shortcomings in federal law and send the message that prosecutors now have the tools to incarcerate persons who defraud investors or alter or destroy evidence in certain Federal investigations. This amendment is a step in the right direction. It creates two new criminal statutes that would clarify current criminal laws relating to the destruction or fabrication of evidence and the preservation of financial and audit records. The Enron debacle clearly indicated that there were gaping holes in the current framework. There will be a 10 year criminal penalty for the destruction or creation of evidence with the intent to obstruct a federal investigation. There will be a new 5 year criminal penalty for the willful failure to preserve, for a minimum of five years, audit papers of companies that issue securities.

"The amendment also provides for the review and enhancement of criminal penalties in cases involving obstruction of justice and serious fraud cases. All of these actions are necessary to deter future criminal action. Until somebody responsible goes to jail for a significant amount of time, I am not sure that these people are going to get the message. Defrauding the shareholder has to carry a penalty of more than a fine. Many corporate decision-makers are making millions of dollars a year. A relatively small fine is not a deterrent; it's a slap on the wrist. The threat of jail is a deterrent that will make people pay attention.

"This amendment also creates a new securities fraud offense. This provision makes it easier, in a limited class of cases, to prove securities fraud. Currently prosecutors are forced to resort to a patchwork of technical offenses and regulations that criminalize particular violations of securities law, or to treat the cases as generic mail or wire fraud that results in a five-year maximum penalty. This new provision would criminalize any scheme or artifice to defraud persons in connection with securities of publicly traded companies or to obtain their money or property. This new ten-year felony is comparable to existing bank and health care fraud statutes. To those who'd say that it's hard to define a scheme or artifice to defraud, I'd say that full and honest disclosure of material dealings and accounting treatments is the best way for the officers who run America's corporations to protect themselves and those who invest in their companies. There are plenty of felony laws on the books that provide long prison terms for crimes that cause less damage than the losses to shareholders in Enron or WorldCom.

"It is important to emphasize that when criminal charges are pursued, it is not necessarily the firm that should be charged but the individuals at the helm of the corporate ship who should be prosecuted. If they are the ones making the decisions out of self-interest, they are the ones that should be held accountable. I also believe that we must protect the "corporate whistleblower" from being punished for having the moral courage to break the corporate code of silence. This amendment does that.

"This amendment also extends the current statute of limitations for matters concerning securities fraud, deceit or manipulation. The current statute of limitations for securities fraud cases is unfairly short given the complexity of many of these matters. Innocent, defrauded investors may be wrongly stopped short in their attempts to recoup their losses under current law. The existing statute of limitations for most securities fraud cases is one year after the fraud was discovered but no more than three years from the date of the fraud regardless of when it was discovered. Because this statute of limitations is so short, the worst offenders may avoid accountability and be rewarded if they can successfully cover up their misconduct for merely three years. The more complex the case, the easier it will be for these wrongdoers to get away with fraud. According to at least one state Attorney General, the current short statute of limitations has forced some states to forgo claims against Enron based on alleged securities fraud in 1997 and 1998.

"This situation essentially encourages offenders to attempt to cover up their misdeeds however they can, including by using questionable accounting procedures and financial shell games. Furthermore, in some cases, the facts of a case simply do not come to light until years after the fraud. If a person does not and cannot know they have been defrauded, it is unfair to bar them from the courthouse.

"These limitations are even more unfair when considered in light of the obstacles that current law can place between a victim and the courthouse in securities fraud cases. By the time a victim learns enough facts to file a complaint, survives a motion to dismiss, begins discovery, and learns that an additional wrongdoer or theory should be added to the case, that claim may be barred and the wrongdoer is able to avoid liability. Thus, current law sets up a perverse incentive for victims to race into court, so as not to be barred by time. Indeed, the short statute of limitations may even encourage frivolous cases, as a plaintiff operating in bad faith would have little trouble meeting the one-year deadline simply by naming every possible defendant and asserting every possible claim. We need to recognize the sophistication and complexity of modern-day schemes designed to defraud investors. It is long past time to give innocent victims a more reasonable chance to recover their losses.

"Finally, this provision amends the federal bankruptcy code to prevent the corporate wrongdoer, the CEO or CFO, from sheltering their assets under the umbrella of bankruptcy and protecting them from judgments and settlements arising from federal and state securities law violations. Too many of these highly paid corporate officers are using bankruptcy laws to protect their assets while maintaining their high-rise penthouses and ski chalets. It is time to force accountability and punish the person, not the institution, who is not willing to abide by the moral and legal codes that accompany leadership and public trust."

A letter to my Senators.......

Sent: Wednesday, May 10, 2006 1:18 PM
Subject: letter to Durbin and Obama

Listening to Lamar Alexander of TN and others regarding the reason many people must travel miles to get to a physician is because of all the malpractice law suits filed in this country. This could be no further from the truth!

I would beg you to please take a look at Bill Frist's family empire/monopoly. HCA, INC. It is because of this conglomerate that our health system is in the crisis it is in and I implore you to bring up the reason people have to travel miles to a physician is not because of the malpractice but because of the monopoly HCA has been able to build in this country for the last 25-30 years. Not to mention the Billions, and possibly trillions of dollars in Medicare/Medicaid fraud, some of which has been exposed, most of which has not.

I would be more than happy to discuss my research and proof of my statements. This will be exposed, sooner or later with or without your assistance.
Thank You-
Susan Golden

Saturday, June 21, 2008

"...he will forfeit $850,000 in proceeds from the crimes....

Bowling Green Doctor Pleads Guilty To Health Care Fraud
Friday, 20 June 2008

A Bowling Green doctor has pled guilty to charges of health care fraud according to U.S. Attorney David L. Huber.

58 year old Verlon Lane Pierce has admitted to having defrauded health care benefit programs, including Medicaid by unlawfully billing those programs, for pharmaceutical drug samples provided to patients. He also admits he unlawfully purchased, sold and traded prescription drug samples. As part of a plea agreement, he will forfeit $850,000 in proceeds from the crimes.

Maximum potential penalties are 20 years in prison, a $500,000 fine and 3 years supervised release.

Verlon Pierce will be sentenced September 11 at 9 am in Bowling Green by Judge Thomas B. Russell.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

WHAT??? U.S. District Court Judge Richard Story gave Shanthaveerappa credit for the 400 days he has served in home confinement ....

Doctor gets probation for insurance fraud
June 17, 2008
Editor’s Note:

Questions? Comments? Write: National Lyme Report Editor Derek Clontz. He reads and answers all e-mails, usually within minutes and always within one business day.

Doctor gets probation for $650K insurance fraud
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, January 23, 2008


Stone Mountain doctor initially charged with injecting his patients with commercial-grade weed killer was sentenced Thursday to five years’ probation for health care fraud.

Totada R. Shanthaveerappa, 73, who was suspended by the state medical licensing board after his indictment in 2005, treated terminally ill patients at his clinic in Stockbridge.

He pleaded guilty in October to defrauding insurance companies out of $650,000 for submitting false and misleading claims. Shanthaveerappa paid the entire amount of fraud in restitution.

Federal sentencing guidelines called for a sentence of between 24 and 30 months in prison and federal prosecutors recommended a term within that range, Assistant U.S. Attorney Randy Chartash said. But U.S. District Court Judge Richard Story gave Shanthaveerappa credit for the 400 days he has served in home confinement and gave him a probated sentence, Shanthaveerappa’s lawyer, Don Samuel, said.

“We are very happy with the judge’s decision,” Samuel said. “This doctor is an incredibly compassionate man who’s helped countless people who had incurable cancers and whose children had terminal diseases. He provided hope.”

Among Shanthaveerappa’s initial charges was illegally giving patients Dinitrophenol (DNP), a weed killer and insecticide. But Shanthaveerappa did not plead to this charge.

Samuel said the doctor gave DNP to five patients who had been diagnosed with Lyme Disease. “None of them were injured by it and he stopped it after those five patients,” Samuel said.

U.S. Attorney David Nahmias said …

Shanthaveerappa “posed a threat to the public health, safety and welfare by treating patients with unapproved procedures and drugs. He then submitted bills to the patient’s insurance companies that disguised and mischaracterized the types of treatments and drugs he actually used.”

U.S. Supreme Court regarding the federal statute for money laundering ......

The sentencing of Virginia dentist, Dr. Roy S. Shelburne has been postponed due to a recent United States Supreme Court case relating to his conviction on money laundering.

A June 2 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court regarding the federal statute for money laundering is the latest in a string of delays – ranging from a late-arriving transcript of the trial, to the defense attorney’s computer crashing at the 11th hour – to push back the sentencing.

On Monday, Judge James P. Jones of the U.S. Western District of Virginia said the high court’s split decision in United States v. Santos “may be significant” in sentencing Shelburne.

Jones called the decision “complicated,” and “something I need to study further.”

It is unclear what if any bearing the high court’s decision will have on the sentencing.

Shelburne was convicted on March 6 of racketeering, health care fraud and money laundering, and faces up to 120 years in prison and a $1.25 million fine.

Dr. Roy Shelburne remains on bail pending sentencing and continues to practice dentistry but on a “dramtically reduced” level.

The judge in the case did not set a trial date for sentencing on Monday. The defense hopes to argue for a new trial at the sentencing hearing.

Support our Troops???? Oh yea!!!

Man gets 5 years for $100M Tricare fraud

By Ryan J. Foley - The Associated Press
Posted : Thursday Jun 19, 2008 7:33:55 EDT

MADISON, Wis. — A former health care executive was sentenced Tuesday to five years in prison for helping his Philippines-based company swindle nearly $100 million from the U.S. military health insurance program.

Thomas Lutz, 41, said in federal court he took responsibility for the six-year scheme in which Health Visions Corp. bilked $99.9 million from the military’s Tricare program through inflated and fraudulent claims.U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb said the five-year sentence was modest given the extent of the fraud, but it was the longest she could impose under Lutz’s plea deal.

Health Visions and Lutz were initially charged in a 75-count indictment in 2005. He pleaded guilty in 2006 to a single count of conspiracy to pay kickbacks and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors, a deal Crabb called “a huge break” for Lutz.

“It’s just horrifying that you were able to take as much money as you did,” Crabb told Lutz.

Prosecutors said the company routinely inflated claims by more than 230 percent, operated a phony insurance program and billed for medical services never delivered.

In April, Crabb ordered Health Visions to pay $99.9 million in restitution. Under her order, the company must sell all of its assets, including land, hospitals and office buildings, within 10 months. She said Lutz would be responsible for paying the remainder, including at least 25 percent of his income once he is released from prison.

Crabb gave Lutz until March 18 to report to prison. Prosecutors asked for the nine-month delay so Lutz could help the government recover as much money as possible from the company.

Formed in 1997, Health Visions owned and operated hospitals and clinics in the Philippines and billed Tricare on behalf of other health care providers. The company served thousands of U.S. military retirees living in the Philippines, where bases were located until the early 1990s.

The company was reimbursed $163 million by Tricare between 1998 and 2004, and prosecutors believe at least $99.9 million of that was fraudulent.

Lutz, an American citizen, read a brief statement in which he took full responsibility for his company’s actions.

“I would like to apologize to the Department of Defense,” he said. “I am truly sorry for all those who have been affected.”

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Wescove Home Health Services

By AmericasNewsToday.Org staff

On the morning of Friday, June 6, special agents with the FBI and IRS-Criminal Investigation arrested the operator of Wescove Home Health Services at her home in Covina, Calif., on health care fraud and money laundering charges stemming from her participation in a scheme that defrauded Medicare out of more than $12 million.

Felcoranenda "Nenda" Estudillo, 50, a registered nurse, ran Wescove, which was based in the city of West Covina. Estudillo was Wescove’s administrator, responsible for the home health agency’s day-to-day operations and Medicare billing activity. In a 36-count indictment returned earlier this week and unsealed Friday, Estudillo is charged with conspiracy, health care fraud, money laundering, the structuring of cash transactions and falsifying records to maintain Wescove’s participation in the Medicare program.

According to the indictment, Estudillo paid marketers to recruit Medicare beneficiaries to receive benefits they were not eligible to receive. The marketers recruited and referred Medicare patients to Wescove, even though the beneficiaries were not confined to the home and did not need skilled nursing or therapy services. According to the indictment, Wescove billed Medicare for home health services provided to beneficiaries who were not confined to their homes, did not qualify for or need those types of services, or never received any services.

Estudillo allegedly paid marketers fees ranging from $300 to $4,800, based upon the amount that Wescove was able to fraudulently bill to Medicare. Estudillo would pay marketers higher fees for patient referrals that resulted in increased Medicare billings. She also allegedly paid referral fees that she booked as "skilled nursing" payments to conceal the payment of kickbacks.

According to the indictment, some Medicare beneficiaries were paid cash to sign up for home health services after being recruited by the marketers to receive services they did not need or did not receive. Estudillo allegedly paid more than $3.1 million to at least six marketers for the referral of Medicare beneficiaries.

The indictment charges Estudillo with 11 money laundering counts and 12 cash-structuring violations. These result from allegations that Estudillo laundered the proceeds of her Medicare billing scheme to promote the scheme, conceal the source of payments made to marketers and to herself, and avoid the payment of taxes . According to the indictment, Estudillo paid cash to some of the marketers who referred patients. To facilitate this, Estudillo devised a check-cashing scheme involving the marketers and Wescover employees in which they negotiated Wescove checks, obtained cash, and Estudillo used some of the cash to pay the marketers and patients. Estudillo allegedly wrote checks to marketers and employees in amounts less than $10,000 in an effort to avoid the currency transaction reporting requirements that banks are required to follow.

If convicted of all counts in the indictment, Estudillo faces a statutory maximum penalty of 430 years in federal prison.

The investigation of Estudillo was conducted by IRS-Criminal Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

On the Web:,


COLUMBUS, Ohio - A federal judge has denied a request by the founder of a failed health care financing company to delay his corporate fraud trial.

Former National Century Financial (other-otc: CYFL.PK - news - people ) Enterprises chief executive Lance Poulsen wanted his trial in the $1.9 billion fraud case moved from August to October to give him and his attorneys more time to get ready.

But U.S. District Court Judge Algenon Marbley says he's already delayed the trial three times and sees no reason for another delay.

Poulsen had argued that his trial earlier this year on a related witness-tampering charge delayed his preparation for the fraud trial.

Marbley says Poulsen's attorneys knew they'd have to balance the demands of that trial and the upcoming fraud trial.

Copyright 2008 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed

Cracking down on home health care fraud.....REALLY?

Cracking down on home health care fraud
Updated: 06/12/2008 09:21 AM
By: Ken Jubie

NEW YORK STATE -- Dr. Hedy Migden thought she had done everything right when trying to find a Certified Nursing Assistant to take care of her then 84-year-old Parkinson's inflicted mother. She used a reputable agency, listed specific needs and was assured that the aide's background checked out. But even after doing her due diligence, Migden and her mother became victims of the fraud Attorney General Andrew Cuomo and state leaders are hoping to prevent.

At first, Dr. Migden and her mom were very happy with their home health aide, Tracey Uzel.

“She seemed competent. She slept on a cot in my mom's room. She seemed attentive and appropriate,” Midgen said.

Cracking down on home health care fraud
State lawmakers and the Attorney General are proposing legislation to crack down on fraud in the home health care industry. Ken Jubie sat down with a woman who used a reputable agency to hire a Certified Nursing Assistant to take care of her then 84-year-old mother, only to become a victim of the fraud Cuomo and state leaders are hoping to prevent.

But about a week later, Migden said her service started to slip. Then on the Saturday morning of Uzel's third week, she found her mother's house a mess and her debit card and other personal items were gone. They were stolen by the caretaker.

“We called the police, had her arrested and with the police interrogating her, she indeed produced the debit card,” Migden said.

About an hour later, the police revealed even more about the woman trusted to take care of her mother.

“Tracey Uzel is in fact Jonathan Uzel. And that Jonathan Uzel had a very extensive rap sheet including assault, prostitution,” said Migden.

Now, six years later, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo and state lawmakers are joining together to create legislation preventing others from feeling the same senses of guilt and betrayal Migden has experienced since entrusting her mother's care to a criminal.

Cuomo said 152,000 New Yorkers receive this kind of aide and his investigation led to more than 50 arrests for industry fraud. To stop it, he's proposing an Internet registry, listing aides and the schools that certified them.

“Part of the registry will require the school to certify that the aide was trained in accordance with state regulations,” Cuomo said.

The New York CARES Act will also list employment history, prior instances of abuse, mistreatment or neglect and past Department of Health decisions on employment based on criminal history.

“If the home care person doesn't have credibility coming into your home, that creates a huge discomfort for everybody,” said Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno.

“I think to have a central registry would prevent those who have more serious offenses from even presenting to an agency for hire,” Migden said.

Migden said the state is taking a solid first step to save other families from the pain she and her mother have experienced. Her mother, by the way, is now 90 and doing well in a nursing home and Migden said she hopes lawmakers will also consider stronger requirements for people responsible for caring for one of our most vulnerable populations.

South Florida region bills Medicare more than $2 billion each year

Miami - Home to the largest health-care fraud by one person by B.A.C., 06/13/2008
Hats off to our local High School dropout Rita Campos Ramirez for orchestrating the largest single person Medicare fraud in US history! Rita managed to scam the government for $105 million over 4 years and treated herself to two condos and a benzo. As a result of her conviction by the man the government has been able to convict others who were implicitly involved in her scheme. It seems Rita isn't the only one milking the system here in Miami either;

Investigators and prosecutors trained their focus on Miami after noticing two troubling patterns:
HHS investigators discovered that nearly half of 1,581 medical equipment companies they visited in the Miami area did not comply with basic Medicare requirements to be open during scheduled hours and to have a telephone number. The inspector general and the Government Accountability Office have flagged weak oversight of these kinds of suppliers for a dozen years, according to congressional testimony.
The South Florida region bills Medicare more than $2 billion each year for injectable HIV medications. That figure is 22 times as high as the amount of similar claims in the rest of the country, and is far out of line with demographic data in a population of 2 million people in Miami-Dade County, HHS statistics show.
Now thats the American dream ladies and gentleman. Drop out of school yet still be savvy enough to swindle the American government for $104 mil. I am applauding you at this moment Rita and I'm certain many other dropouts here in Miami are ready to take your place and lead the charge for the continued labeling of Miami as the only third world city in the USA.

[MSNBC 'Rags to riches' through Medicare fraud]

Medicare Fraud Runs Rampant

Medicare Fraud Runs Rampant
Posted Jun 13, 08 1:34 PM CDT in Science & Health, Crime & Courts, US

(Newser) – Health care fraud is rampant, especially in South Florida and the LA area, and surprisingly easy to pull off, reports the Washington Post. The 11-digit annual price tag could be smaller if investigators focused more on the fact that Medicare, for example, is "highly vulnerable" to scam artists and less on billing irregularities and unorthodox treatments, experts say.

Authorities have moved aggressively against crooks and have seen some success, but the problem remains massive. “The sheer number of zeroes following the dollar sign is irresistible to crooks and con men,” says AG Michael Mukasey. “For every crooked company we bust, there is another one to replace it before the ink on the indictment is dry.”

Source Washington Post

One issue is that Medicare doesn't review the majority of the bills it pays to companies with federally issued supplier numbers,....

Medicare fraud on the rise nationwide

WASHINGTON, Jun 13, 2008 (UPI via COMTEX) -- Healthcare experts say the simplicity of defrauding the U.S. Medicare program points to the need for more resources devoted to prevent fraud.

One issue is that Medicare doesn't review the majority of the bills it pays to companies with federally issued supplier numbers, The Washington Post said Friday.

Checks are in place more to detect overbilling and unconventional medical treatment than fraud, officials said.

Law enforcement officials estimate healthcare fraud costs taxpayers more than $60 billion annually.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which oversees federally-funded health programs, said it's instituted several new measures to combat fraud. The efforts include working more closely with investigators, removing the mandatory billing numbers of nearly 900 companies and imposing new standards in areas of high fraud that prevent convicted felons from receiving a Medicare number.

In the Miami area, the U.S. Justice Department created a strike force that works with a small number of U.S. attorneys. The joint effort during the past year opened almost 900 criminal investigations and convicted 560 defendants in healthcare fraud offenses throughout the country, the Post said.

The strike force recently established a base in Los Angeles and plans call for similar operations in Houston soon.

URL: Copyright 2008 by United Press International

The Real Criminals: Corporate CEOs

It’s not the two-bit petty criminal whose causing the real danger in our lives and neighborhoods, it’s the Corporate criminals. The guys in suits, two steps removed from the people they are inflicting life threatening damage to that are wrecking havoc on our lives and our nation.

Corporate crime is often violent crime with very real victims. Mokhiber points out that while the FBI estimates that 16,000 Americans are murdered every year “56,000 Americans die every year on the job or from occupational diseases such as black lung and asbestosis while tens of thousands of other Americans fall victim to the silent violence of pollution, contaminated foods, hazardous consumer products, and hospital malpractice.” -Gene Racz

Literally thousands of people dying because of purposeful oversight and ignorance by those whose only concern is often the bottom line. And your probably thinking, “It’s a good thing are government is taking care of them,” wondering how many CEOs will come to the same fate as Skilling and Lay (of Enron). And then you find out this tidbit:

The New York Times recently reported that the government has basically stopped prosecuting corporations for crimes despite the fact that costs of corporate crime far outweighs street crime. Eric Lichtblau, writing for the Times, noted that during the last three years, the U.S. Justice Department has put off prosecuting more than 50 corporations on charges ranging from bribery to fraud. Instead, it has been entering into so-called deferred prosecution agreements and non-prosecution agreements, in which companies are allowed to pay fines and hire monitors to watch over them.

Noware corrupt, but simply that it’s a terrible statement about our society that those with money are allowed to keep stealing from the rest of us and not be prosecuted for it. Seriously, they are stealing from all of us, not only on the product side of things but also in our tax dollars:

Health-care fraud alone, he said, costs Americans $100 billion to $400 billion a year. The taxpayer bill to clean up the savings and loan fraud was anywhere from $300 billion to $500 billion.

Not only do we need to speak up to our Justice Department about how this is unjust and unfair, but this knowledge should change and challenge the way you talk about and think about criminals. You should either conjure up the same disgust and suspicion of CEO’s as you currently have of street criminals and those you think look like criminals, or you should try and balance your perspective on both to a more understanding, but equally just perspective on both.

Cato Institute puts health care fraud at over $60 billion per year

Fraud, and certainly abuse
The Cato Institute gets its knickers in a knot about Medicare fraud, citing a report that puts health care fraud at over $60 billion per year.Let's put this number in a bit of perspective:

Medicare actually lost about seven cents of every dollar spent to fraud, waste and mistakes in 1998, government auditors said earlier this month.

That amounts to more than $12 billion -- but it's only about half of what was lost by the government's health insurance program for the elderly and disabled just two years ago.

Yep, a fivefold increase in less than a decade.

Let's see, what happened in that decade?

Oh, yes, the administrators at the top changed.

You don't send Republicans to do a man's job.

Update: Medicare reduces costs for providers, it turns out. I guess the Bush League couldn't fix that.

How A Corrupt "Bushie" Operates in Alabama

One couple's encounter with corrupt judges, slimy lawyers, and incompetent prosecutors in Alabama. . . and how you can avoid being cheated by the vermin who make a mockery of our justice system.

Monday, June 16, 2008
How A Corrupt "Bushie" Operates in Alabama
Alice Martin, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Alabama and the first prosecutor to go after former Democratic Governor Don Siegelman, stepped in some serious doo-doo in a recent post, and we are going to show you why.

But before we do that, let's review what we've learned in our "Malice of Alice" series.

First, we provide background on my attempts to tell Martin about judicial corruption I had witnessed by Republican judges in Alabama state courts and an attorney with family ties to Karl Rove and the Bush Administration.

Then, we show how Martin sent my allegations to a most curious place for investigation--the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, which does not even have jurisdiction to investigate the kinds of crimes I was alleging.

Then, we present Martin's explanation for sending my allegations to the postal inspection service.

Now, we're about to show you how and why Martin has stepped in some serious doo-doo.

But first, let me rephrase that statement: If we ever actually have an honest Department of Justice in our lifetimes, Alice Martin has stepped in serious doo-doo. On the other hand, if the DOJ continues to be run by the Alberto Gonzalezes and Michael Mukaseys of the world, Martin doesn't have a thing to worry about.

As Don Siegelman would say, she's got an "umbrella of protection" to keep her out of harm's way.

But regardless of whether the DOJ ever does anything about it or not, Legal Schnauzer readers are going to know the truth: Alice Martin, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Alabama, undoubtedly, blatantly, and corruptly practices political prosecution.

And how does she do it? By sending citizen complaints to the wrong investigative agency and then lying to the citizen about it.

How do we know that Alice Martin lied to us?

Remember the fourth paragraph of my second snail-mail letter to Martin:

I allege, and an investigation will show, that the individuals noted below conspired to commit mail and wire fraud, depriving the citizens of Alabama of their intangible right to honest services under 18 U.S. Code 1346. Because the limitations period begins to run after the last overt act in furtherance of the main goals of a conspiracy (United States v. Fletcher, 928 F.2d 495), all of these acts fall within the five-year mail fraud statute of limitations.

It could not have been more clear: This was about honest-services mail fraud, which is covered under 18 U.S. Code 1346. This is fraud that involves public corruption, and it is distinct from consumer mail fraud, which is covered under other statutes.

But Alice Martin, like the vast majority of lawyers I've encountered, thinks regular citizens are stupid. She figured she could pull one over on me because I don't have J.D. after my name.

Well, Martin is in for a surprise. Because I'm about to use her own words to show that she is a corrupt public official--probably far more corrupt than anyone she has ever investigated.

Just how corrupt, and brazen, is Alice Martin. Recall in her previous e-mail that she said it was "standard procedure" for a complaint alleging honest-services mail fraud to go to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

So being the inquisitive Schnauzer that I am, I thought to myself, "I wonder if that's how it was done in the Don Siegelman cases.?"

I turned initially to the first Siegelman case, the one Martin brought in the Northern District of Alabama. That case, however, was not of much help. It involved Tuscaloosa physician Phillip Bobo and the primary allegations were for conspiracy, health care fraud, and program fraud. Honest-services mail fraud was not a factor.

So I turned to the second Siegelman case, the one Leura Canary brought in the Middle District of Alabama. That's the case in which Siegelman and former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy were convicted, and the primary charges were racketeering, bribery, extortion, conspiracy, and honest-services mail and wire fraud.

In the end, roughly two-thirds of the charges against Siegelman and Scrushy involved honest-services mail fraud. So this was the perfect case to check and see if Alice Martin was telling us the truth.

And what do we learn? Well, consider the last paragraph of the press release (dated October 26, 2005) about the indictment:

The indictment is the result of a joint investigation initiated by federal and state authorities in early 2001 into numerous alleged improprieties in the Siegelman administration. The federal case is being prosecuted by Louis V. Franklin, Sr., the Acting U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Alabama in this case, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Stephen P. Feaga and J.B. Perrine; Trial Attorney Richard Pilger of the Public Integrity Section of the Criminal Division, U.S. Department of Justice, which is headed by Section Chief Noel L. Hillman; and Assistant Attorney General Joseph Fitzpatrick for the State of Alabama, who is also cross-designated as a Special Assistant United States Attorney for this case. The investigation was conducted jointly by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and agents from the Alabama Attorney General’s Office, with assistance from the Department of Transportation Office of Inspector General.

The last paragraph tells us who conducted the investigation. Do you see any mention of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service? I don't either.

So is it "standard procedure," as Alice Martin had told us, to have the U.S. Postal Inspection Service lead an investigation involving honest-services mail fraud?

Alice Martin's own press release tells us it is not. Alice Martin's own press release proves conclusively that Alice Martin is a corrupt U.S. attorney--one who intentionally sends criminal complaints to the wrong investigative agency and then lies to the public about it.

And our paper trail on Alice Martin is just beginning.

(To be continued)

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Nursing home employees doctored records in order to receive Medicaid and Medicare payments for treatment that was never rendered.

Conviction of former Robinson nursing home operator upheld
By Jason Cato
Friday, June 6, 2008
A federal appeals court today upheld the conviction of the former administrator of a defunct Robinson nursing home on one count of health-care fraud and eight counts of making false statements on health-care matters.
Martha Ann Bell, 62, formerly of West Mifflin, was found guilty in August 2005. U.S. District Judge Terrence F. McVerry sentenced Bell in October 2006 to five years in prison.

Bell operated the Ronald Reagan Atrium I Nursing and Rehabiliation Center on Campbell's Run Road. Nursing home employees doctored records in order to receive Medicaid and Medicare payments for treatment that was never rendered.
Bell is scheduled for release in 2011, according to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. Bell is being held at the Allegheny County Jail pending an upcoming theft trial in state court, where she will face charges that she stole more than $50,000 from an Atrium account for her personal use.

Wonder why ambulance rides are so expensive?? ...



For Release: May 29, 2008

U.S. Department of Justice

United States Attorney

Northern District of Ohio

William J. Edwards

Acting United States Attorney

Michael L. Collyer

Assistant U.S. Attorney

(216) 622-3744

William J. Edwards, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, announced today the unsealing of four federal indictments charging seven individuals with various health care fraud-related offenses in connection with the transportation of Medicaid beneficiaries in vehicles called ambulettes.

The indictment charges with violations of laws involving mail fraud, wire fraud, health care fraud and conspiracy:

1. ROBERT SHUMAY, owner of Care Bear Transportation, 3615 Superior Avenue, #3104G, Cleveland, Ohio;

2. IVAN BOBAS, owner of Star Safety Transportation, 6216 Tall Oaks Drive, Mentor, Ohio;

3. ALEKSANDR ROTENBAKH, owner of Transit 7 Inc., 996 Professor Road, South Euclid, Ohio;

4. YEVGENIY ROTENBAKH, owner of Transit 7 Inc., 996 Professor Road, South Euclid, Ohio;

5. FATIMA WARE, owner of FW Transport, LLC, 7511 Indiana Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio, and Ware Care Transportation, LLC, 21291 Carol Avenue, Euclid, Ohio;

6. KENYATTA WARE, owner of Ware Care Transportation, LLC, 21291 Carol Avenue, Euclid, Ohio; and

7. ZSAMARA BOOKER, owner of Ware Care Transportation, LLC, 21291 Carol Avenue, Euclid, Ohio.

Robert Shumay is charged with six counts of wire fraud and nine counts of health care fraud. Ivan Bobas is charged with seven counts of mail fraud and nine counts of health care fraud. Aleksandr Rotenbakh is charged with one count of conspiracy, six counts of wire fraud, and ten counts of health care fraud. Yevgeniy Rotenbakh is charged with one count of conspiracy, six counts of wire fraud, and ten counts of health care fraud. Fatima Ware is charged with one count of conspiracy, ten counts of wire fraud, and fifteen counts of health care fraud. Kenyatta Ware is charged with one count of conspiracy, eight counts of wire fraud, and ten counts of health care fraud. Zsamara Booker is charged with one count of conspiracy, eight counts of wire fraud, and ten counts of health care fraud.

Ambulette services contract with the Ohio Medicaid program to transport patients in vehicles known as ambulettes. An ambulette is a specially equipped van designed for wheelchair passengers. Medicaid pays ambulette operators for driving Medicaid beneficiaries to and from Medicaid-covered appointments, so long as: (1) the patient rides in a wheelchair; (2) a medical doctor certifies the need for the wheelchair and ambulette; and (3) the ambulette itself otherwise meets safety specifications.

The defendants in each of these cases are charged with scheming to defraud Medicaid by charging Medicaid for rides of patients who did not use wheelchairs or require the need of wheelchairs.

If convicted, each defendant’s sentence will be determined by the Court after review of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines and factors unique to each case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, the defendant’s role in the offenses and the characteristics of the violations.

The indictment is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Department of Health and Human Services - Office of Inspector General, and First Assistant Attorney General Thomas Winters’ Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the Ohio Attorney General’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael L. Collyer with assistance from Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Constance Nearhood, an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Ohio.

An indictments is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

federal appeals court in Denver has reinstated a lawsuit

Nurses demand increase in staffing at Centerpoint
The Kansas City Star

Nurses at Centerpoint Medical Center in Independence said Thursday that the hospital needs to beef up staffing to ensure patient safety.

Nurses United for Improved Patient Care, a union that represents Centerpoint nurses, said the nurses made their case in a petition to the hospital, which is part of HCA Midwest Health System.

Uriah Magill, an intensive care nurse at Centerpoint, said care suffers when he and his colleagues are forced to look after too many patients at once.

“As the care provider, it is very frustrating and concerning when the patient needs care and we can’t provide that to them because we are overworked and overloaded,” Magill said.

The union noted that Centerpoint scored worst among area hospitals in key patient ratings reported recently by the federal government.

HCA Midwest spokeswoman Sara Smith said Centerpoint is in contract negotiations with Nurses United.

“Unions often use press releases of this nature in an attempt to use leverage in bargaining. Centerpoint is dedicated to quality patient care, and staffing levels are determined based on the needs of our patients on a daily basis,” she said.

Smith acknowledged that Centerpoint needs more nurses than the 300-plus who are currently on staff. She said the hospital is successfully recruiting new nurses amid a nationwide nursing shortage.

HCA Midwest, which is based in Kansas City, is part of Nashville-based HCA Inc.

In a separate matter, a federal appeals court in Denver has reinstated a lawsuit claiming that Wesley Medical Center in Wichita and other HCA hospitals had endangered patients through inadequate medical and nurse staffing.

The case involved patient Joseph Spires, who died at Wesley in 2004. The plaintiffs said HCA had developed a computer software program that led to inadequate staffing at Wesley and other HCA hospitals.

A federal court in Wichita earlier had dismissed the would-be class action lawsuit.

“This case is without merit and is not about patient care,” HCA spokesman Ed Fishbough said Thursday.

To reach Julius A. Karash, call 816-234-4918 or send e-mail to

Kendall Regional Medical Center and its sister HCA affiliates

Posted on Thursday, June 05, 2008

LAWFUEL - US Attorney News Releases - Three former employees of Kendall Regional Medical Center (“KRMC”), a full-service hospital located in Miami-Dade County, Florida, were charged in an Information filed today with conspiring to defraud the KRMC of nearly $7 million through a sophisticated purchase order scheme, announced R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida and Jonathan I. Solomon, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Miami Field Office. Specifically, the Information charges defendants Joanna Delfel, Victor Garcia, and Sylvia Oramas with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1349. If convicted, each defendant faces a maximum term of imprisonment of twenty years.

According to the Information, from 2001 through May 2007, the defendants, working with unindicted co-conspirators who held positions of authority at two medical supply companies, The Pharmed Group, Corp. (“Pharmed”) and Allied Medical Products, Inc. (“AMP”), participated in a fraud scheme in which the defendants entered unauthorized and false purchase orders and delivery verifications into the computerized system used by KRMC for all of its medical supply orders and purchases. These entries made it appear as if almost $7 million in medical supplies had been ordered and delivered to KRMC by Pharmed and AMP. Based on these false purchase orders, KRMC’s parent company, HCA, Inc. (“HCA”), paid Pharmed and AMP the full amount for the false supply orders. To funnel HCA’s payments to the defendants and other uncharged co-conspirators, and to conceal the nature and source of the proceeds, the payments were transferred to two shell corporations, Soho Marketing, Inc. (“SoHo”), and Gator Sports Collectibles, Inc. (“Gator”), controlled by members of the conspiracy. Members of the conspiracy then issued checks from SoHo and Gator to the defendants and other members of the conspiracy and created fraudulent documents to disguise these payments as employee compensation.

Mr. Acosta commended the investigative efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Mr. Acosta also acknowledged the cooperative efforts of Kendall Regional Medical Center and its sister HCA affiliates for their assistance in this investigation. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jeffrey E. Marcus and Ryan K. Stumphauzer.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida at or on