El Paso Jury Finds Texas Pain Management Physician and Psychiatrist Guilty on Federal Health Care Fraud Charges
|U.S. Attorney’s Office July 01, 2011|
United States Attorney John E. Murphy announced that in El Paso, a federal jury convicted Dr. Anthony Francis Valdez, 57, on all charges in connection with an estimated $41 million fraudulent health care benefit program billing scheme. Dr. Valdez was the owner of the Institute of Pain Management with clinics in El Paso and San Antonio.
Dr. Valdez was charged in a 16-count superseding indictment returned on April 20, 2011, with one count conspiracy to commit health care fraud, six counts of health care fraud, six counts of false statements related to health care matters, and three counts of money laundering.
Evidence during trial revealed that beginning in January 2005 and continuing through December 2009, Dr. Valdez caused fraudulent claims to be submitted to Medicare, Medicaid, and TRICARE for procedures which he did not perform or were non-reimbursable.
As a result of the guilty verdict, Dr. Valdez faces up to 10 years in federal prison for the conspiracy charge as well as each substantive health care fraud charge; up to five years in federal prison for each of the false statement charges; and up to 20 years in federal prison for each of the money laundering charges. The government is also seeking the forfeiture of more than $1.7 million in cash, the defendant’s residence in El Paso, his residence in San Antonio, and five vehicles, as well as a monetary judgement in the case for over $41.8 million. Sentencing is scheduled for November 18, 2011 before Senior United States District Judge David Briones.
This case was investigated by agents with Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration, Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the Defense Criminal Investigative Service-Southwest Field Office together with the Texas Attorney General’s Office. Assistant United States Attorneys William F. Lewis, Jr., and Juanita Fielden are prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.