HomeFlorida NewsFlorida, California, and Texas men charged in $36 million health care fraud

Florida, California, and Texas men charged in $36 million health care fraud


Florida – An indictment was unsealed yesterday in the United States Attorney’s Office Southern District of Florida revealing a $36 million fraud scheme involving three men from Florida, California and Texas, who are accused of exploiting health care benefit programs, including Medicare and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) COVID-19 Uninsured Program. This scheme centered around the submission of false claims for COVID-19 testing, highlighting ongoing challenges in the fight against health care fraud.

Details of the Indictment

47-year-old Enrique Perez-Paris, from Aventura, Florida; 47-year-old Diego Sanudo Sanchez Chocron, from Venice, California; and 57-year-old Gregory Charles “Milo” Caskey, from San Antonio, Texas, are the individuals facing charges. Each made their initial court appearances—Perez-Paris and Sanchez in Florida, and Caskey in Texas.

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According to official court documents, the men owned Innovative Genomics, an independent laboratory, and from November 2019 to June 2023, they, along with other accomplices, reportedly conspired to submit claims for medically unnecessary and non-reimbursable COVID-19 tests. These tests were often not approved by the Food and Drug Administration for emergency use, yet were billed as if they were legitimate.

Allegations of Kickbacks and Bribes

The indictment further alleges that the defendants engaged in illegal activities by offering kickbacks and bribes to patient recruiters. These recruiters were tasked with convincing health care providers to refer patients to Innovative Genomics for testing. In some instances, these actions led to the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) COVID-19 Uninsured Program being improperly billed for tests for Medicare beneficiaries.

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The legal consequences facing the accused are severe. Each defendant is charged with conspiracy to commit health care fraud and wire fraud, three counts of health care fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering. The potential penalties are stringent, with up to 20 years in prison possible for each of the conspiracy counts and a maximum of 10 years for each count of health care fraud.

Authorities in Charge of the Case

High-ranking officials made the announcement, including Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Nicole M. Argentieri and U.S. Attorney Markenzy Lapointe for the Southern District of Florida. They highlighted the collaborative effort of the FBI and the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General (HHS-OIG) in investigating the case.

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Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey B. Veltri of the FBI Miami Field Office and Special Agent in Charge Stephen Mahmood of HHS-OIG’s Miami Regional Office were instrumental in the investigation. Trial Attorney Reginald Cuyler Jr. of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section is prosecuting the case, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Marx Calderon is in charge of asset forfeiture.

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