May 7, 2015

Medicare Beneficiary Pleads Guilty in Ambulance Fraud Scheme

PHILADELPHIA—Keisha Regusters, 38, of Philadelphia, PA, pleaded guilty today to a fraud scheme involving kickbacks from an ambulance company. U.S. District Court Judge William H. Yohn, Jr. scheduled a sentencing hearing for August 11, 2015. Regusters faces a possible advisory sentencing guideline range of six to 12 months in prison, up to three years of supervised release, restitution, a fine of up to $500,000, and a $200 special assessment.

In July 2010, Feda Kuran, charged elsewhere, began operating Brotherly Love Ambulance, Inc. with a co-schemer. In approximately October 2010, Keisha Regusters began being transported to dialysis by Brotherly Love, even though she could walk and could have been transported safely by means other than ambulance and was, therefore, not eligible for ambulance service under Medicare requirements. Kuran billed Medicare for those ambulance services as if they were medically necessary when she knew that they were not. Regusters accepted monthly kickback payments to induce her to continue to ride with Brotherly Love, and she solicited payments to induce her to continue to ride with Brotherly Love.

As a result of the defendant’s actions and those of Brotherly Love, the Medicare program paid more than $52,000 in inappropriate bills. As a result of the overall scheme at Brotherly Love, the Medicare program was billed for more than $4.9 million and paid more than $2 million in inappropriate bills. In November 2014, Feda Kuran was sentenced to 64 months in prison.

The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the U.S. Department of Labor Office of the Inspector General. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Mary E. Crawley and Paul W. Kaufman.