Silicon Valley's Indian-American Operator of Home Health Care Biz Charged with Medicare Fraud

Federal prosecutors in Silicon Valley have filed fraud charges against 30 defendants in a patients-for-cash kickback scheme. Indian-American CEO Ridhima "Amanda" Singh of Amity Home Health and Indian-American Bhupinder Bhandari are among the key defendants charged in the case. Pakistani-American Dr. Mariam Hasan, a graduate of Karachi's Dow Medical College, has also been charged. In addition to South Asians, the accused come from many different national origins, according to media reports.

Ridhima Singh, daughter of Dr. Rajiv Ahuja of Fremont, funneled $8 million in bribes — in Warriors tickets, Louis Vuitton bags, and “literal envelopes of cash” — to doctors, nurses, social workers and marketers in the South and East Bay who sent patients to the company, said David Anderson, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California. Those new patients brought $115 million in Medicare funds for Amity and a related corporation, Advent Care.

Here's the full list of individuals and companies changed in the scheme:

Defendant    Role    Age/Residence    Case Number

AMITY HEALTH CARE Home Health Care Provider 19-71440 ADVENT CARE, INC. Hospice Care Provider 19-71459

SINGH, AMANDA CEO of Amity 33, Livermore 19-71430

ADDISON, BRENDA Amity employee 49, Oakland 19-71431

BHANDARI, BHUPINDER Doctor 59, Pleasanton 19-71441

DEGUZMAN, MERVINA Nurse/Case Manager 41, San Jose 19-71447

HICKS, KIMBERLY Doctor 59, Oakland 19-71451

KABANSKAYA, YELENA Doctor 39, San Jose 19-71452

MYINT, GERALD Doctor 68, Union City 19-71448

NGUYEN, TAM Doctor 44, San Jose 19-71453

POSADA, JUAN Doctor 58, Cupertino 19-71449

SCZENDZINA, EWELINA Marketer 42, Gilroy 19-71434

TAYLOR, SCOTT Doctor 61, Oakland 19-71455

WATSON, HENRY Doctor 63, Oakland 19-71423

ZHANG, ZHENG Doctor 62, Saratoga 19-71457

SANTOS, GLENNDA Marketer 47, Castro Valley 19-71433

MANCUSO, APRIL Doctor 38, Los Gatos 19-71445

REYNOLDS, KERISIMASI Doctor 37, Los Gatos 19-71446

CARIAGA, CATHERINE Nurse/Case Manager 31, Fremont 19-71458

TIRONA, TERENCE Nurse/Case Manager 33, Hayward 19-71454

DEL ROSARIO, SAL Case Manager 44, San Jose 19-71456

GAY, ANDRE NICOLAS Doctor 39, Union City 19-71460

HASAN, MARIAM Doctor 37, Milpitas 19-71450

ROY, BELINDA Nurse/Case Manager 59, Fremont 19-71443

SUNO, NICOLE Marketer 38, San Leandro 19-71421

TEODORO, STELLA Nurse/Case Manager 37, Union City 19-71444

TACORDA, HILDA Marketer 40, Hayward 19-71432 PINA,

REBECCA Marketer 38, Redwood City 19-71442

SINGH, VINEETA Social Worker 42, Hayward 19-71422

PRESCOTT, CAROLINE Marketing Director 53, San Ramon 19-71420

Ridhima Singh pushed associates to get her more patient referrals. “It’s been so many years and i know you are aware of what the expectations are,” she texted one associate in November 2018, according to the prosecutors. “I’m not here to fight I’m pretty clear cut and u know that. I’m drama free but things can get to my nerve when I don’t see the mutual understanding.”

The suspects face a maximum of 10 years in prison and $500,000 if they are found guilty.

Judge Joseph C Spero released the defendants on bail. He urged them not to violate the terms of their bonds. He also said that the case may not reach a conclusion for years. He told Ridhima Singh: “A complicated case like this could take years and you don’t want to be sitting in a jail cell.”

Back in 2014, Pakistani-American cardiologist Dr. Asad Qamar, the second highest Medicare biller in America at the time, was investigated by US Department of Health and Human Services for unnecessary surgeries and over-billing. He settled with the Department by agreeing to pay $2 million and release any claim to $5.3 million in suspended Medicare funds.

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

South Asia Investor Review

Pakistan 3rd Largest Source of Foreign Doctors in America

Silicon Valley Pakistani-Americans

History of South Asians in America

Pakistani-American Cardiologist Investigated by US Dept of Health

Silicon Valley Indian-American Congressman Joins Pakistan Caucus

Riaz Haq Youtube Channel

VPOS Youtube Channel


Riaz Haq said…
A 50-year-old Indian-origin tech entrepreneur has been arrested in the US for an alleged investment scheme that defrauded more than 10,000 victims of over $45 million and netted him several luxury cars and real estate.

Neil Chandran, of Las Vegas in Nevada, was arrested on Wednesday in Los Angeles, the Department of Justice said.

According to the indictment, Mr Chandran owned a group of technology companies that he used in a scheme to defraud investors by falsely promising extremely high returns on the premise that one or more of his companies, operated under the banner of "ViRSE," was about to be acquired by a consortium of wealthy buyers.

Mr Chandran's companies -- which included Free Vi Lab, Studio Vi Inc., ViDelivery Inc, ViMarket Inc, and Skalex USA Inc, among others -- developed virtual-world technologies, including their own cryptocurrency, for use in the companies' own metaverse.

The indictment alleges that Mr Chandran caused other individuals to make various materially false and misleading representations to investors, including that investors in his companies would soon receive extremely high returns when one or more of those companies was purchased by a group of wealthy buyers.

In fact, according to the indictment, there was no such buyer group that was about to purchase the companies for the claimed returns; a substantial portion of the funds was misappropriated for other business ventures and the personal benefit of Mr Chandran and others, including the purchase of luxury cars and real estate; and there were no prominent billionaires involved in purchasing Mr Chandran's companies.
Riaz Haq said…
#Americans duped into losing $10 billion by illegal #Indian call centers in 2022. Most of the victims of these #fraud calls from Indian phishing gangs were elderly #US citizens above the age of 60 years, according to #FBI. #India @deccanherald

After several incidents were reported in 2022, the FBI has now deputed a permanent representative at the US embassy in New Delhi. The representative will work closely with the CBI, Interpol and the Delhi Police to bust these gangs that have put India under the threat to be termed as the hub of such illegal call centres.

Americans lost a total of $10.2 billion in 2022 so far, which is a 47 per cent increase from 2021’s $6.9 billion, to such fraud calls. FBI’s South Asia head Suhel Daud told the publication that "romance-related" frauds reported were worth Rs 8,000 crore in 2021 and Rs 8,000 crore in the last 11 months of 2022. Losses due to "tech support" crimes were as much as $3 billion in the last two years – $347 million in 2021 and $781 million in 2022 so far.

“It may not be a national security concern yet, but the reputation (of a country) is involved, and we don’t want India to suffer on that count,” Daud told the publication. He also noted that the FBI’s website has registered 8.5 lakh complaints in 2021 and over 7.8 lakh complaints so far in 2022 in regard to internet crimes. Those complaints included cyber crime related to investment ($3 billion), business email compromise ($2.4 billion), personal data breach ($1.2 billion), romance($1 billion) and tech support ($781 million).

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