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Feds Indict 73 in Armenian-American Organ. Crime Ring Involving $163 Million in Healthcare Fraud

Scams in the WWWBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

More than 70 people including members and associates of an Armenian-American organized crime enterprise were charged in a nationwide scam involving $163 million in fraudulent Medicare and insurance billing, federal authorities announced Wednesday.

Authorities alleged that 73 people were involved in the operation of at least 118 different phony clinics in 25 states.

The scam involved submitting fraudulent bills “for medically unnecessary treatments or treatments that were never performed,” the Justice Department said, adding the defendants allegedly stole identities of doctors and Medicare beneficiaries.

“The emergence of international organized crime in domestic health care fraud schemes signals a dangerous expansion that poses a serious threat to consumers as these syndicates are willing to exploit almost any program, business or individual to earn an illegal profit,” Acting Deputy Attorney General Gary G. Grinder said in a statement.

“The Department of Justice is confronting this evolving threat here and abroad through a number of initiatives including a strengthened Attorney General’s Organized Crime Council and the creation of the International Organized Crime Intelligence and Operations Center (IOC-2) to ensure that we are focused and coordinated in our efforts to combat international organized crime.”

Kevin Perkins, FBI Assistant Director of the Criminal Investigative Division, said in a statement:

“The international organized crime enterprise known as the Mirzoyan-Terdjanian, fleeced the health care system through a wide-range of money making criminal fraud schemes.

” The members and associates located throughout the United States and in Armenia, perpetrated a large-scale, nationwide Medicare scam that fraudulently billed Medicare for more than $100 million of unnecessary medical treatments using a series of phantom clinics.”


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