January 9, 2003
Sean Caine, 410-576-6357
MAN SENTENCED FOR STEALING
$125,000 FROM MEDICAID
General J. Joseph Curran, Jr., announced today that a Columbia man
was sentenced for stealing $125,000 from Medicaid. Barry Mehta,
60, of the 5500 block of Oakland Mills Road, was sentenced by Baltimore
County Circuit Court Judge Robert N. Dugan for fraud he committed
while operating Family Home Center, an adult day care center formerly
located at 5550 Baltimore National Pike. Judge Dugan sentenced Mehta
to a five year term of incarceration, suspended that sentence, placed
Mehta on supervised probation for five years, and ordered him to
perform 500 hours of community service. Mehta must also pay $125,000
in restitution and a $125,000 penalty.
the fall of 1993 and May 2000, Mehta owned and operated Family Home
Center, which provided medical care and rehabilitative services
to eligible Medicaid recipients. During the entire seven year period
that his facility was open, Mehta systematically billed the State
for clients who were not actually present. The employees of FHC
were required by Mehta to take client attendance on a daily basis.
Mehta would instruct employees to add an average of two names to
the list of present clients, despite protestations that the clients
had not in fact attended. Mehta would then use the attendance sheets
to complete the invoices that were sent to Medicaid for payment.
the course of the investigation, the state executed a search and
seizure warrant on the premises of Family Home Center. According
to a witness, the next day Mehta took her aside and told her that
he thought he would be going to prison. When asked why, he replied:
"Because I told Reauchean to mark the attendance sheets."
Reauchean was one of Mehta's employees.
billed the Medicaid program for adult day care services provided
to enrolled Medicaid recipients. In return for services provided
in accordance with the relevant regulations, Medicaid would pay
FHC per patient per day. That rate increased over time, but, during
the time covered by the Indictment, from October 1993 to May 2000,
the average amount paid per patient per day to FHC was $57.01. Medicaid
regulations require that a provider bill only for services that
are actually provided to eligible recipients. The amount of fraudulent
billings submitted by Mehta totaled $125,000.
CPM Corporation, a company controlled by Mehta and associated with
his day care center, also entered a plea of guilty to felony Medicaid
fraud, and was sentenced by the court to pay a penalty of $125,000.
"Our Office will continue to vigorously prosecute those who
defraud the Medicaid program," Attorney General Curran said.
"Those who steal from Medicaid are also stealing from those
individuals who depend on Medicaid for many vital services and support."