Patient recruiter guilty in $205M Medicare fraud


Published: Friday, June 20, 2014 at 9:12 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, June 20, 2014 at 9:12 a.m.

MIAMI — A South Florida man has pleaded guilty to recruiting patients in exchange for illegal kickbacks as part a $205 million Medicare fraud scheme.

Former Network Resource Consultant Inc. chief Michael Mendoza pleaded guilty to health fraud conspiracy Thursday in Miami federal court. Mendoza faces a maximum of 10 years in prison at sentencing in August.

Court documents show Mendoza recruited patients for now-defunct American Therapeutic Corp. Mendoza agreed with ATC owner Lawrence Duran to refer people in assisted living facilities to ATC in exchange for payments. The referrals were for unnecessary or not provided mental health services.

Prosecutors say more than $430,000 in false Medicare claims were submitted based on Mendoza's referrals.

Duran, one of many people convicted in the ATC scam, is serving 50 years in prison.

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