Florida Home Health Owner Convicted in $57 Million Fraud Scheme

The owner and manager of three Miami, Florida-area home health agencies was convicted late last week for his role in a $57 million fraud scheme that involved submitting false and fraudulent claims to Medicare, the United States Department of Justice announced.

Khaled Elbeblawy, 39, of Miramar, Florida, was convicted of one federal count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and wire fraud and one federal count of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and pay health care kickbacks. Elbeblawy was the manager of Willsand Home Health Agency Inc. and the owner of JEM Home Health Care LLC and Healthy Choice Home Health Services Inc.

According to evidence presented during trial, Elbeblawy and others used the three companies to submit approximately $57 million in false and fraudulent claims to Medicare between January 2006 and May 2013. The claims detailed services that were not medically necessary, were not actually provided and were for patients procured through the payment of kickbacks to doctors and patient recruiters, a news release states.

Medicare paid about $40 million on those claims, according to evidence introduced at trial.

A sentencing hearing for Elbeblawy is scheduled for April. He faces up to 25 years in prison. His ex-business partner, Euless Escalona, 47, pleaded guilty to fraud in 2012 and is already serving a 10-year prison sentence, according to the Associated Press.

Written by Kourtney Liepelt