He committed $205 million in Medicare fraud, heading the largest community mental health chain that took advantage of patients with Alzheimer's and severe dementia for services never provided, prosecutors alleged. In addition to soaking Medicare for millions of dollars, he received illegal kickbacks and doled out bribes. What's more, he had lawmakers and lobbyists in Washington fooled.
Now defunct American Therapeutic Corporation owner Lawrence Duran earlier this year pleaded guilty to 38 counts of healthcare fraud, conspiracy, and money laundering, reports Politico, and last month was sentenced to 50 years in prison--the harshest healthcare fraud sentence ever issued.
Now, reports point to Duran's role in rubbing elbows with Washington's lawmakers, lobbyists, and candidates, as the founder of the trade group, National Association for Behavioral Health. The advocacy group "provided Duran a legitimate-looking vehicle to lobby Congress to allocate more money, through Medicare, to Duran and his co-conspirators for their fraudulent schemes," trial lawyer Jennifer Saulino wrote in a sentencing memo last month, reports The Washington Post. "Duran did not stop with just committing a massive fraud on the Medicare program through his own companies. Duran franchised his fraud to others," Saulino said.
The National Association for Behavioral Health spent at least $620,000 on D.C. lobbying to hire former Sen. John Breaux (D-La.) and former head of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Thomas Scully, reports Bloomberg.
In addition, association members held fundraisers and lobbied for the likes of Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), Rep. Kendrick Meek (D-Fla.), and Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), according to Politico. Prosecutors said that Duran was not simply a passive member of the National Association for Behavioral Health and "instigated lobbying efforts."
Prosecutors have not accused the association, lobbyists, or lawmakers of any wrongdoing, according to the Bloomberg article.
"I am sorry, and I have been for years," Duran testified at his sentencing hearing, reports The Washington Post. "Not that day that I was arrested, but for years and years. I had to live with all of this for a very long time," he said. With the 50-year sentence, Duran is likely to die in prison.
Thank You FierceHealthcare and Ms Cheung
For more information:
- read the Politico article
- see the Bloomberg article
- read The Washington Post article
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The most disturbing part of this story is not that he swindled $205 Million before he was prosecuted and convicted. That's a Given when you're dealing with treating diseases, sicknesses, 'Illneses' which are NEVER actually Cured, only Diagnosed and Poisoned/Bullshitted into "Remission", ...... because the entire Game is a Swindle.
No, the Most disturbing part of this story is that these 'Illness' diagnosing charlatans aren't being rounded up Wholesale all Over America and their Waste, Fraud, and Abuse isn't tossing them All out of business, if not into the No-Key Hotel right along With Mr Duran.
Waste, Fraud, and Abuse. $205 Million. Uh-Huh, based upon the Psy-ence of These Clowns.
And the self restraint/cut off point that Today's Unlawfully Govt. Empowered Inheritors/Imbibers of those FRAUDS actually live by, for determining that some small, ..... Oh, ...... Let's use the Industry's own Published figure of 1 in every 5 being Incurably afflicted with a 'Mentawhl Illneth' hits the ground AS:
And We've Descended To This Pass How?
Mental Health is nothing more than another Entitlement Program, and as such, it needs to be cut out, entirely, from our State and Federal, Vote Buying, Budgets, unless of course somebody can show us where in the Constitution Citizens own an Inalienable Right to be Defrauded, Poisoned, Maimed and Killed at Public Expense in order to make them 'Feel Better'.