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Post date: October 23 2013

A.G. Schneiderman Announces Sentencing Of Former Disabled-Services Employee For Fraudulent Billing

Former Employee Who Submitted Fake College Diploma To Obtain Job, Causing Nearly $25K In Illegal Medicaid Claims, Sentenced Today

WEBSTER – Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced the sentencing of Akin Ross, a former Medicaid service coordinator at Continuing Developmental Services Monarch (CDS), for causing $24,798.75 in fraudulent billings to the New York State Medicaid program after using a phony college diploma to obtain his job. Ross pleaded guilty with one count of petit larceny and sentenced to three years of probation. He must also pay $14,934.30 in restitution to CDS for the salary and benefits he illegally obtained. CDS will pay $24,798.75 to the State for the Medicaid billings generated by Ross.

"Medicaid services fraud hurts patients who count on quality healthcare and the taxpayers who pay for those services," Attorney General Schneiderman said. “My office will continue to prosecute criminals looking to line their pockets with taxpayer dollars meant for professional medical staff and their patients.”

Ross, 36, of 38 Adela Circle in Rochester, previously pleaded guilty in Webster Town Court before Judge David T. Corretore. He admitted that from August 2006 to March 2007, while employed at CDS Monarch, located at 860 Hard Road in Webster, he caused CDS to improperly receive Medicaid reimbursements for services he was not qualified to perform. 

When applying for his job at CDS, Ross claimed to have attended SUNY Brockport, a claim later shown to be false. While on the job, Ross billed Medicaid for client services he performed, for which state Medicaid regulations require an employee to have at least a college associate’s degree or be a registered nurse. Consequently, the Medicaid program paid CDS $24,798.75 for services Ross was not qualified to perform.

Ross provided services to developmentally disabled persons and to a person suffering from a traumatic brain injury. The investigation by the Attorney General’s Office revealed that in August 2006, when Ross applied to CDS for a Medicaid service coordinator position, he submitted a diploma indicating he had received a Bachelor of Science degree, cum laude, from SUNY Brockport in May 2002, a school he never attended.

Special Assistant Attorney General Timothy McFarland, of the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit’s Rochester Regional Office, is prosecuting the case, under the supervision of Upstate Chief of Criminal Investigations Catherine Wagner, MFCU Special Deputy Attorney General Monica Hickey-Martin and Executive Deputy Attorney General for Criminal Justice Kelly Donovan. 

Assisting in the investigation is Special Investigator Jason Rice and Special Auditor/Investigator Jennifer Harrison from the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit under the supervision of Deputy Chief Investigator Thaddeus Fisher and MFCU Rochester Regional Chief Auditor Thomas Clarke. The Attorney General’s Office would also like to thank the New York State Office of the Medicaid Inspector General for its assistance in this investigation.

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