Couldn’t Help It

47847021 - nurses pushing seniors in wheelchair thru nursing home

Whether a cookie jar on the counter tempts us with its fresh baked delicacies or a great sale tricks us into buying more than we need at the local mall, indulgence can often get the best of us. (It was so tempting I just couldn’t help myself.) A story posted on the website of the Los Angeles CBS affiliate tells about a California man who couldn’t help himself when faced with a very lucrative fraud opportunity that involved bilking Medicare out of millions of dollars.

According to the article, the man owned a medical clinic management company. Court documents show that the scheme was accomplished through company representatives who wrote bogus prescriptions for medically unnecessary power wheelchairs and other durable medical equipment and then sold them to supply companies.

In less than a year, these medical supply companies had submitted more than $3.3 million in bogus prescriptions. Medicare paid more than $1.4 million for the bogus claims. (That’s a lot of money taken away from deserving beneficiaries.)

The story states that the 37-year-old man pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud. It also says he committed the crime knowing that the prescriptions were false. He is currently awaiting sentencing.

So why did this fraudster continue to do something that he knew was wrong? (It looks like selfishness, greed, and a bit of ”I deserve this” got the best of this guy.) When standing before the judge, the only thing he can possibly do to help himself is to tell the truth. Perhaps full disclosure will offer him a chance to do things right the second time around.

Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on an article titled, ”Owner of Van Nuys Medical Clinic Pleads Guilty to Medicare Fraud Scheme,” published by on August 15, 2014.

LOS ANGELES ( — The former owner of a Van Nuys medical clinic management company pleaded guilty Friday to a scheme defrauding Medicare of millions of dollars.

Mihran ”Mike” Meguerian, 37, of Glendale, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud.

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Larry Benson, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Larry Benson is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and solutions for the government vertical. His expertise focuses on how government programs are defrauded by criminal groups, and the approaches necessary to prevent them from succeeding.

Mr. Benson has 30 years of experience in sales and business development. Before joining LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, he spent 12 years founding and managing two software technology startups. During the 1990s he spent 10 years as a Regional Director helping to grow a New England-based technology company from 300 employees to 7,000. He started his career with Martin Marietta Aerospace working on laser guided weapons and day/night vision systems.

A sought-after speaker and accomplished writer, Mr. Benson is the principal author of “Fraud of the Day,” a website dedicated to educating government officials about how criminals are defrauding government programs. He has co-authored WTF? Where’s the Fraud? How to Unmask and Stop Identity Fraud’s Drain on Our Government, and Data Personified, How Fraud is Changing the Meaning of Identity.

Benson holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Albright College, and earned two graduate degrees – a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science in Engineering from Lehigh University.