Alexander Burman Sentenced To 10 Years In Prison For $26 Million Scheme To Defraud Medicare And Medicaid
May 16, 2017 – Defendant Established Six Clinics in Brooklyn that Paid Elderly People to Pose as Patients, and Billed Medicare and Medicaid For Unnecessary and Non-Existent Medical Care and Equipment.
Joon H. Kim, the Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that ALEKSANDR BURMAN, a/k/a “Alexander Burman,” was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Paul G. Gardephe to 10 years in prison.
BURMAN organized and managed a large health care fraud scheme through six medical clinics in Brooklyn, through which BURMAN and his co-conspirators defrauded the Medicare and New York State Medicaid (“Medicaid”) programs of more than $26 million.
As part of the scheme, BURMAN and his co-conspirators paid cash kickbacks to elderly and financially disadvantaged patients insured by Medicare and/or Medicaid, to induce those patients to receive medically unnecessary medical services and equipment, and then to bill Medicare and Medicaid for those unnecessary services or for additional non-existent services and equipment.
BURMAN pled guilty on March 18, 2016, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Henry B. Pitman to conspiring to commit wire fraud and health care fraud, health care fraud, and committing an offense while on pretrial release in an earlier criminal case.
Acting U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim said: “Aleksandr Burman victimized both patients and taxpayers. He established and operated six fraudulent medical clinics, bilking Medicare and Medicaid out of more than $26 million. Medicare and Medicaid were established to assist the elderly and disadvantaged, not to enrich corrupt fraudsters.”
According to the Information to which BURMAN pled guilty, other filings in Manhattan federal court, and statements made in connection with BURMAN’s sentencing:
ALEKSANDR BURMAN established six clinics in Brooklyn (the “BURMAN Clinics”) that operated between 2007 and July 2013, which purported to offer medical services and diagnostic testing performed by or under the supervision of licensed medical doctors.
Although BURMAN in fact owned and operated the Clinics, he caused them to employ three doctors (the “Clinic Doctors”) and arranged for these doctors to be listed as the respective nominal owners of the Clinics, since New York State law requires that such clinics be owned by health care professionals.
Under BURMAN’s direction, employees of the Clinics paid cash kickbacks to elderly and disadvantaged people insured by Medicare and/or Medicaid to undergo unnecessary medical tests and procedures, and then fraudulently billed Medicare and Medicaid for such visits.
The bills submitted to Medicare and Medicaid were fraudulent because, among other things, (a) they were for medically unnecessary treatment; (b) patients were paid kickbacks for receiving treatment; and (c) the bills fraudulently claimed that the Clinic Doctors had treated the patients.
In other cases, BURMAN and his co-conspirators billed Medicare and Medicaid for medical services and supplies that were not provided at all.
The fraud also extended to other companies. For example, prescriptions from the doctors at the BURMAN clinics were used by a supply company that BURMAN partly owned to bill Medicaid for more than $3.5 million in durable medical equipment such as adult diapers, many of which were never provided to patients. Similarly, referrals from these same doctors were used by transportation companies to bill Medicaid for millions of dollars for medically unnecessary ambulette services.
In addition to his prison term, BURMAN, 55, a resident of Manhattan, was ordered to pay $16,686,811 in forfeiture, of which $1.8 million, plus 22 pieces of real estate, have already been forfeited.
BURMAN was also sentenced to three years of supervised release and a restitution order of $18,683,691. BURMAN was immediately remanded to the custody of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons.
Nine former employees of the BURMAN clinics, as well an additional associate, are facing charges in a separate case for related conduct. Those defendants are awaiting trial before United States District Judge Lorna G. Schofield in United States v. Vaid.
Mr. Kim praised the outstanding investigative work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the New York State Office of the Medicaid Inspector General (“OMIG”).
The prosecution of this case is being handled by the Office’s Complex Frauds and Cybercrime Unit. Assistant United States Attorney David Raymond Lewis is in charge of the prosecution.
|Written by Susen Sawatzki|
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