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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Kansas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 1, 2013

Optometrist From Derby, Kan., Pleads Guilty To Wire Fraud

WICHITA, KAN. – An optometrist from Derby, Kan., has pleaded guilty to wire fraud in a scheme to collect more than $500,000 in pay for eye exams that were never performed, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said today.

Wade D. Abbey, 47, Derby, Kan., pleaded guilty to five counts of wire fraud. An indictment filed in March 2012 alleged that Abbey and his wife, Mindy L. Abbey, both of whom were optometrists, worked for Visions Doctors of Optometry. They were paid an hourly wage and additional fees for each full eye exam they conducted. He inflated the number of eye exams they performed and provided false information to an accountant who paid them based on the false information.

In his plea, Abbey admitted that:
On Jan. 6, 2010, he sent an email stating that he provided 177 full eye exams and his wife provided 160 full eye exams, which he knew was not true.
On Jan. 20, 2010, he sent an email stating he provided 197 full eye exams and his wife provided 186 full eye exams, which he knew was not true.
On Feb, 3, 2010, he sent an email stating he provided 206 full eye exams and his wife provided 185 full eye exams, which he knew was not true.
On March 31, 2010, he sent an email stating he provided 207 full eye exams and his wife provided 185 full eye exams, which he knew was not true.
On June 23, 2010, he sent an email stating he provided 187 full eye exams and his wife provided 176 full eye exams, which he knew was not true.

As a result of the fraud, he was paid $583,060.

Sentencing is set for May 16, 2013. He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000 on each count, as well as an order to pay restitution.

Co-defendant Mindy Abbey is awaiting trial.

Grissom commended the FBI and Assistant U.S. Attorney Debra Barnett for their work on the case.