Numerous Los Angeles-area residents have been arrested in connection with seperate criminal cases that allege they cumulatively submitted more than $22 million in false billings to Medicare.
The defendants taken into custody in Los Angeles are charged in alleged health care fraud cases that were investigated by the fedeal Medicare Fraud Task Force.
One defendant, Dr. Houshang Pavehzadeh, allegedly billed Medicare more than $1.7 million for chiropractic treatments he never performed. During the scheme, which ran from 2005 through 2012, he became the second-largest Medicare biller in California for chiropractic services. In addition to healthcare fraud, Pavehzadeh is charged with aggravated identity theft.
Additionally, several defendants affiliated with medical equipment companies were charged in separate indictments. Olufunke Fadojutimi, 41; Ayodeji Temitayo Fatunmbi, 41; and Maritza Velazquez, 40, were charged with health care fraud in a scheme that allegedly revolved around a company called Lutemi Medical Supplies. According to the indictment, Lutemi billed Medicare more than $8.3 million in claims, primarily for unnecessary power wheelchairs.
In a separate case, Susanna Artsruni, 45, and Erasmus Kotey, 76, allegedly commited health care fraud out of a medical clinic on Vermont Avenue. Kotey allegedly prescribed medically unnecessary medical equipment for Medicare beneficiaries.
Additional defendants include Yaroslav Proshak, 45; Sharetta Wallace, 35; and office manager and biller Sergey Mumjian, 40, of West Hollywood — who were charged with submitting more than $5.9 million in false claims to Medicare between 2008 and 2011. The Medicare Fraud Strike Force has been operating since May 2009.
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