Hogsett Announces Indictment of Hamilton County Man on Health Care Fraud, Money Laundering Charges
Carmel Resident Charged with Using Indianapolis Business to Defraud Medicaid of $1 Million
|U.S. Attorney’s Office March 30, 2012|
INDIANAPOLIS—Joseph H. Hogsett, the United States Attorney, announced today that Donald Hamilton, age 49, of Carmel, has been charged by federal indictment with one count of health care fraud, five counts of false statements in a health care matter, and two counts of money laundering, all of which is alleged to have resulted in a loss to Hoosier taxpayers of more than $1 million. This comes as the United States Attorney’s Office has pledged to make the investigation and prosecution of corruption and fraud a top priority in 2012.
“This state was built with the basic Hoosier values of hard work, dedication, and honesty,” said Hogsett. “For those who shun these shared principles, those who succumb to greed and embrace a culture of corruption, this office has a simple message: you will be found, you will be investigated, and you will be brought to justice.”
The indictment alleges that Hamilton is the controlling owner of Indianapolis-based Compression Etc., a company that sells custom made compression stockings. Beginning in September 2010, it is alleged that Hamilton used another company, Hamilton Medical Incorporated, to generate false invoices that represented that the compression stockings cost almost three times what Hamilton’s companies actually paid for the stockings.
These invoices were then sent to the Indiana Medicaid program to justify a claim for reimbursement that was much higher than that allowed by law. As a result of the scheme, Hamilton is alleged to have defrauded over $1,000,000 from the Indiana Medicaid program. The indictment further alleges five specific dates where Hamilton provided the false invoices to the Indiana Medicaid program.
The indictment also alleges that Hamilton used the money received from the fraud to pay a $38,992.92 American Express bill and write a $17,163.53 check to an Infiniti dealership in Tennessee.
Today’s announcement is the result of a collaborative investigation by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations (IRS), and Indiana Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit.
“This investigation is representative of the dedicated joint efforts of the Indianapolis Health Care Fraud Task Force, including the FBI, HHS, IRS, and Indiana Medicaid Fraud Control Unit,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Robert J. Holley. “The FBI will continue to work aggressively with our law enforcement partners to investigate those who violate the public trust by stealing taxpayer money.”
“Together with the United States Attorney’s Office and our federal and state law enforcement partners, we are committed to following the money in these cases,” said IRS Criminal Investigation Division Special Agent in Charge Al Patton. “Money laundering constitutes a serious threat to our communities and to the integrity of our financial system. This division has the financial investigators and the expertise that is critical to investigating, locating, and following the money and playing a key role in prosecuting the offenders.”
“Fraud in federally funded health care programs such as Medicaid is intolerable,” said Lamont Pugh, III, Special Agent in Charge of the Chicago Region of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General. “The OIG will continue to work diligently with our law enforcement partners to protect Medicaid patients and vital taxpayer dollars.”
“Overbilling and fraudulent billing of the Medicaid program by providers is a serious problem that the Indiana General Assembly is reviewing in a summer study committee,” said Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller. “The Indiana Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit worked cooperatively with our federal law enforcement partners on the investigation of this provider, and we appreciate the U.S. Attorney taking this necessary legal action to seek justice on behalf of the public.”
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Bradley P. Shepard, who is prosecuting the case for the government, Hamilton faces a maximum of 10 years for health care fraud and each money laundering charge and five years for each false statement charge, as well as a $250,000 fine for each charge.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.