A spine surgeon in Milwaukee has been indicted for health care fraud. He faces 13 counts of federal fraud, and the penalties include up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each count if he is convicted. The indictment includes charges that the surgeon recruited another doctor to prepare reports showing that nerve monitoring was performed during surgeries. Allegedly, there was no such service provided.
The claims totaling more than $265,000 were submitted to insurance companies. The surgeon ultimately received $82,000 in payment from the insurance companies, and he paid the other doctor $14,250. This is one example of white collar crimes that prosecutors are pursuing, so it's important for accused doctors to defend themselves as effectively as possible.
When someone is accused of a white collar crime like tax fraud, forgery or insider trading, they may be surprised that these crimes still carry harsh penalties, even though no one is physically harmed as a result of them. While there may not be physical damage, there are still monetary losses, and prosecutors may decide to seek restitution as well as jail time. In some fields, a conviction can result in the loss of licenses, and the damage to reputation can be enough to keep people out of their field of work.
Professionals who are accused of crimes like this should seek legal counsel to help with their defense. Attorneys with experience in Internet crime, Ponzi schemes and other types of white collar crimes may help people defend their good name. They may be able to start working with you right away to craft and effective defense and ensure that all options are pursued. The criminal investigations are often complex, and they can take a long period of time to complete, but an experienced attorney may be able to help you understand the process, so you can make informed decisions and put the best defense plan in place.
Source: Wisconsin State Journal, "Wisconsin surgeon indicted for health care fraud", May 17, 2013