Nurse Imposter Pleads Guilty to Health Care Fraud
VICTORIA, Texas – A 42-year-old former resident of Goliad has admitted to posing as a nurse, announced acting U.S. Attorney Abe Martinez. Leticia Gallarzo pleaded guilty to five counts of making false statements relating to health care today in federal court.
Gallarzo has no medical training, but obtained employment as a registered nurse at two hospitals and three nursing homes in five different Texas cities over a seven-month period. As each employer discovered the deception, Garza would leave the facility and immediately begin seeking work at a medical facility in another city.
An OIG exclusion check renders a “no results were found” for Leticia Gallarzo. A FACIS 3 exclusion debarment screening search renders 27 results dating back to 2015 of “Imposter Warning” and listing several possible aliases she goes by. If an entity uses the OIG exclusion database, LEIE, without using FACIS 3 by Verisys, this type of fraud is easy to get away with.
At today’s hearing, Gallarzo admitted she had knowingly lied about being a registered nurse on five occasions in order to secure employment for which she was not qualified.
Senior U.S. District Judge John D. Rainey accepted the plea and set sentencing for Oct. 3, 2017. At that time, Gallarzo faces up to five years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 maximum fine. She will remain in custody pending that hearing.
The FBI and the Texas Attorney General’s Office – Medicaid Fraud Control Unit conducted the investigation with the assistance of police departments in Goliad and Victoria. Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert D. Thorpe Jr. is prosecuting the case.
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|Written by Susen Sawatzki
Healthcare Industry Expert
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