Attorney General Cuomo Announces Guilty Pleas From Wayne County Medicaid Transportation Company For Stealing Nearly $1 Million
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (July 8, 2008) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that M & M Medical Transport, Inc., and its owner, Murtada S. Ebrahim, pleaded guilty to stealing $971,267 from Medicaid, and have agreed to pay full restitution to the state.
From January 1, 2003 to December 6, 2007, Ebrahim and his company, which offered taxi and ambulette services to Medicaid recipients from Monroe and Wayne counties, defrauded Medicaid by filing claims to Medicaid for reimbursement for services provided by unqualified drivers. Ebrahim, 45, of Sedgefield Court in Irondequoit, also filed a false report with the Department of Motor Vehicles, which covered up an accident involving one of M & M’s ambulette drivers who abandoned an elderly, wheelchair-bound patient at the scene.
“This company not only endangered our most vulnerable citizens by hiring unqualified drivers, but also stole hard-earned taxpayer money,” said Attorney General Cuomo. “My office is committed to rooting out unscrupulous health care providers that attempt to bilk taxpayer-funded health programs, and abuse our already overburdened health care system.”
M & M Medical Transport, Inc., located on State Road 104 in Williamson, pleaded guilty before Wayne County Court Judge Dennis Kehoe to grand larceny in the second degree, a class C felony. Ebrahim pleaded guilty to grand larceny in the third degree, a class D felony, which carries a maximum prison sentence of seven years, and offering a false instrument for filing in the first degree, a class E felony carrying a maximum penalty of four years in prison. Ebrahim and M & M are scheduled to be sentenced on September 23, 2008.
The Attorney General’s investigation revealed that Ebrahim submitted false reimbursement claims to Medicaid stating that his company complied with Medicaid and Motor Vehicle regulations when in fact, M & M’s drivers failed to meet minimum qualifications to provide services. Due to the false claims filed by M & M, Medicaid paid the company $971,267 to which it was not entitled.
According to court documents, on July 25, 2006, one of M & M’s ambulette drivers was involved in an accident while transporting an elderly wheelchair-bound patient, and ran from the scene. Ebrahim admitted he was aware of the accident but still filed an annual affidavit of compliance with the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles stating that none of M & M’s drivers had been involved in any accidents during 2006.
The Attorney General’s Office expressed its thanks to the Wayne County Department of Social Services and the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles for their cooperation in the matter. This case is being prosecuted by Jerry Solomon, Rochester Regional Director of the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, assisted by Senior Special Investigator William Falk, Principal Auditor Thomas Clarke and Senior Auditor/Investigator Jodi Dineen.