Late Friday, a New York surgeon who practiced at hospitals in Brooklyn and Long Island was convicted for submitting millions of dollars in false and fraudulent claims to Medicare after a three-week jury trial.
The conviction was announced by Robert L. Capers, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Assistant Director in Charge Diego G. Rodriguez of the FBI’s New York Division and Special Agent in Charge Scott Lampert of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General (“HHS-OIG”), New York Regional Office, made the announcement.
Syed Imran Ahmed, 51, of Long Island, was convicted after trial of one count of health care fraud, three counts of making false statements related to Medicare claims and two counts of money laundering.
According to evidence presented at trial, Dr. Ahmed, a surgeon, submitted millions of dollars in false claims to the Medicare program for incision-and-drainage and wound debridement surgeries that he did not perform. Many of the claims also falsely stated that the surgeries were performed in an operating room, even though Dr. Ahmed never performed the surgeries in an operating room or anywhere else. The evidence introduced at trial showed Dr. Ahmed submitted over $25 million in false claims to the Medicare program for surgeries he never performed. Dr. Ahmed received over $3 million from Medicare as payment for the false claims.
The FBI and HHS-OIG investigated the case, which was brought as part of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, under the supervision of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Eastern District of New York. Fraud Section Trial Attorneys Turner Buford and Debra Jaroslawicz and Senior Litigation Counsel Patricia Notopoulos of the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Eastern District of New York are prosecuting the case.
Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, now operating in nine cities across the country, has charged nearly 2,900 defendants who have collectively billed the Medicare program for more than $10 billion. In addition, the HHS Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, working in conjunction with the HHS-OIG, are taking steps to increase accountability and decrease the presence of fraudulent providers.
To learn more about the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team (HEAT), go to www.stopmedicarefraud.gov.