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For Immediate Release
March 12, 2007

Media Contact:
Raquel Guillory, 410-576-6357
rguillory@oag.state.md.us

Baltimore Man Convicted of Medicaid Fraud

Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler today announced that a former mental health counselor pled guilty to felony Medicaid fraud for submitting false documentation to his employer that resulted in a loss to Medicaid of $8,400. Absayo Ojuko, 52, of the unit block of Liberty Place Road in Baltimore, was sentenced to probation before judgment by Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Wanda Heard, and was ordered to serve three years of supervised probation. In addition, he was ordered to repay $8,400 to the state Medicaid program.

Ojuko was paid by Calvary Healthcare Services, Inc., a now-defunct mental health counseling company then located in Baltimore City, to provide counseling services to juvenile Medicaid recipients. Calvary billed Medicaid for services rendered by Ojuko and relied on his documentation of those services in determining when and how much to bill Medicaid. From July through December of 2003, Ojuko submitted documentation to Calvary for services that had not been rendered. Calvary then used that information to bill Medicaid. On several occasions, the children whom Ojuko claimed to have seen were living in juvenile residential facilities which had no record of any visits at all by the defendant.

The case was prosecuted by the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) of the Maryland Attorney General’s Office. The MFCU conducted the investigation with assistance from the Mental Hygiene Administration (MHA), which suspended payments to Calvary in December of 2003. MHA has been working with the MFCU to root out fraud in its programs, and several cases of possible fraudulent behavior by MHA providers are currently under investigation by the Attorney General’s Office. In making today’s announcement, Attorney General Gansler thanked Assistant Attorney General Jason Weinstock for his work on the case.



   

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