Baton Rouge Man Sentenced to Prison Term for Health Care Fraud
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 01, 2011|
BATON ROUGE, LA—United States Attorney Donald J. Cazayoux, Jr. announced that BENJAMIN AMADI, age 55, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, was sentenced this morning by U.S. District Court Judge James J. Brady to serve 30 months in federal prison as a result of a lengthy health care fraud scheme that he perpetrated in the Baton Rouge area.
AMADI was charged in an indictment that was filed on April 28, 2010, and AMADI pled guilty to health care fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1347, on March 3, 2011. The case arose from a fraud scheme involving a company known as Liberty Medical Services, LLC (“Liberty”), which provided power wheelchairs and other durable medical equipment to Medicare beneficiaries in the Baton Rouge area. AMADI owned, operated, and managed Liberty. Through Liberty, AMADI engaged in a scheme to defraud the Medicare program by submitting false and fraudulent claims to Medicare for equipment that had not been provided and was medically unnecessary. For instance, in January of 2008, AMADI submitted a claim to Medicare seeking $9,350, representing to Medicare that Liberty had provided a beneficiary with an extra heavy-duty power wheelchair, designed for beneficiaries weighing more than 600 pounds. In fact, Liberty had purchased and provided a much less expensive wheelchair. In connection with his guilty plea, AMADI admitted that his scheme continued for at least a year.
This morning, Judge Brady sentenced AMADI to serve a term of imprisonment of 30 months. AMADI was also ordered to pay $632,500.31 in restitution, a $7,500 fine, and a $100 special assessment. The court also ordered AMADI to forfeit an additional $632,500.31 in proceeds from his fraud scheme. Following his release from imprisonment, AMADI will be required to serve a two-year term of supervised release.
The investigation of this matter was conducted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office.
“Yet another example of the successful law enforcement and prosecutorial partnership formed by Baton Rouge’s Medicare Fraud Strike Force,” said William W. Root, Assistant Special Agent in Charge, United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General. “Mr. Amadi stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from our nation’s health care program—a program designed to benefit the elderly, blind, and the disabled. Now, Mr. Amadi will have 30 months in a federal penitentiary to consider his actions.”
The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Alan A. Stevens and Leetra Harris. The case was brought as part of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, supervised by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Louisiana and the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section.
To learn more about the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team (HEAT), go to: www.stopmedicarefraud.gov.