Friends and Family

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Friends and family worked together to pull off what is considered to be the largest case of Medicaid fraud in the state of Minnesota. The $7.7million heist involved two sisters who illegally set up home care companies, then stole from the government program that was supposed to take care of their victims.

The younger sister, who was convicted of Medicaid fraud in 2012, told the judge that she had learned a lesson. Apparently, she learned how to run a fraud empire and subsequently worked as an agent for five home care agencies that were enrolled in the Medicaid program. (She disguised her tainted reputation and identity by using the names of family members and worked remotely from Arkansas.)

The two sisters billed Minnesota’s Medicaid program for more than $7.7 million in services that were not provided. Hundreds of thousands of dollars were used to pay unlawful kickbacks to clients, employees and some of the sisters’ friends and relatives.

A total of seven people were charged with Medicaid fraud in Minnesota, including the two sisters. Five of these co-conspirators pleaded guilty to Medicaid fraud, but the case against the sisters is the only one to go to trial. The sisters were convicted for defrauding Minnesota’s Medicaid program by operating fraudulent personal care attendant agencies.

Since this is not the first brush with the law for the youngest sister, there’s a good chance that she will serve considerable time behind bars for her second offense. Let’s hope she comes up with a better line than “I’ve learned a lesson.” (One thing is for sure — friends and family who defraud together go to jail together.)

Today’s “Fraud of the Day” is based on an article, “Two more convicted in largest case of Medicaid fraud in Minnesota state court history,” posted on TwinCities.com on February 11, 2019.

Two people were convicted this past week for defrauding Minnesota’s Medicaid program of $7.7 million.

Lillian Richardson and Bridgett Burrell were found guilty of all charges that the Minnesota Attorney General’s office brought against them — one count each of racketeering and eight counts a piece of aiding and abetting theft by swindle. The convictions were part of the largest case of Medicaid fraud in state court history.

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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.