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Florida State Representative's son convicted of Medicaid fraud

Florida residents were shocked when the son of a respected and well-established State Representative became embroiled in a massive Medicare fraud case.

The State Representative, 56, lives in Miami and has been a Florida resident since 1981. A registered nurse by trade, she is not accused of being involved in this case in any way. She is, however, being investigated in regards to an unrelated scheme alleged by authorities to be run via the group home companies she and her husband control.

Her position has resulted in a spotlight being shone by the media on her son's case. The son, 29, was accused of Medicaid fraud in the amount of almost $300,000. His activities came to light after authorities launched an investigation. When they had sufficient evidence against him, they filed conspiracy and fraud charges. The son was accused of billing Medicaid for services that were not rendered at three different North Miami group homes.

He has now been convicted on those charges. Sentencing is pending, and he may go to prison for as much as 45 years.

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi submitted a written statement in the case. It affirmed that her office will not let criminals defraud the Medicaid program. The statement notes that the taxpayer funded program exists to help people with medical needs. She pledged the unit responsible for fighting fraud in such cases would continue to be relentless and would hold all wrongdoers accountable.

The man at the center of the current case was accused of billing Medicaid for services that were not rendered at three different North Miami group homes.

Medicaid fraud is a serious offense, punishable by long prison sentences. However, it's is important to remember that anyone charged with a crime in this country is innocent until proven guilty. In addition, defendants have rights that must be protected throughout the court process.

Miami Herald, "State lawmaker's son convicted of Medicaid fraud" Marc Caputo, Nov. 08, 2013

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