A California dentist has been charged with 75 counts of insurance fraud for allegedly submitting claims for hundreds of procedures that she did not perform. Prosecutors claim that the scheme earned her more than $300,000. Conviction on all counts could result in her being sent to prison for 83 years according to media reports.
More than 600 of the allegedly fraudulent claims were for root canal procedures. Prosecutors say that she billed insurance companies for 28 root canals on one patient and more than 100 of the procedures on four members of the same family. She is said to have defrauded eight different insurance companies over a period of three years. Prosecutors say that she submitted falsified bills totaling more than $600,000 during that time.
The woman was formally charged on June 10. The judge at her initial hearing released her on her own recognizance but ordered her to surrender her passport. The judge also told the woman that law enforcement could conduct searches of her residence, person or vehicle without first obtaining a warrant. She entered not guilty pleas to all of the charges against her and is scheduled to appear in court again on Sept. 5. The case is being prosecuted by the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office.
This case reveals how severe the penalties for healthcare fraud can be, but prosecutors are sometimes willing to reduce them substantially in return for a swift settlement and to avoid the risks involved in making arguments before a jury. This is because prosecutors work under great pressure and may find it difficult to explain complex white-collar crimes to juries. The experienced attorneys at Kevin Cauley, P.C.may help professionals facing allegations of fraud by explaining the various legal options available to them.
Source: Fox 5 San Diego, Dentist charged with 75 counts of insurance fraud, City News Service report, June 10, 2019