Ten Miami-Dade County assisted living facility owners have received sentences of federal prison time or home confinement for accepting healthcare kickbacks, the Justice Department announced Wednesday.
According to court documents, the operators conspired with the former owner of Florida Pharmacy to receive kickbacks and bribes in exchange for referring residents for prescription medication and durable medical equipment paid for by Medicare and Medicaid. The scheme violated their Medicaid provider agreements as well as federal and state anti-kickback rules and regulations the Justice Department said.
Nine of the owners were sentenced to federal prison terms ranging from eight months to one year and one day, and an additional owner was sentenced to home confinement. All 10 defendants also were ordered to serve three years of supervised release, pay restitution and be subject to forfeiture judgments.
Sentenced to home confinement was Blanca Orozco, 69. Sentenced to prison:
- Alicia Almeida, 56;
- Norma Casanova, 67;
- Yeny De Erbiti, 51;
- Maribel Galvan, 43;
- Marlene Marrero, 60;
- Dianelys Perez, 34;
- Jorge Rodriguez, 57;
- Rene Vega, 57; and
- Osniel Vera, 47
The sentences came in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Indictments against the defendants were announced in October. All 10 subsequently pleaded guilty to receiving kickbacks in connection with a federal healthcare program.