FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
AUSA VICKIE E. LEDUC at 410-209-4885
June 29, 2006
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND MEDICAL CENTER EMPLOYEES PLEAD GUILTY
TO REFERRAL BONUS FRAUD SCHEME
Over $317,000 in Phony Referral Bonuses Obtained
BALTIMORE, Maryland - Samantha White, age 33, and Candice DeShields, age 26, both of Baltimore, pleaded guilty to engaging in a scheme to defraud the University of Maryland Medical Center’s Employee Referral Program, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.
The University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) had a program whereby bonuses were paid to current employees for each new employee they recruited and referred. The referral bonuses were intended to reward existing employees who actually recruited new employees. According to the plea agreements presented to the court, White and DeShields admitted that, beginning in 2004 and 2005, respectively, they participated in a scheme in which they claimed to have referred new employees in order to receive referral bonuses, when in fact they did not know the new employees. White and DeShields would keep a portion of each referral bonus and give the rest to another individual who also participated in the scheme. White and DeShields received referral bonuses totaling $95,768.31. Specifically, the referral bonuses for White, a nursing assistant on the pediatric floor, totaled $77,950.95 of which White kept between $12,000 to $24,000 and provided the remainder to the co-conspirator. DeShields, a secretary, received referral bonuses that totaled $17,817.36 of which DeShields kept about $3,000 and provided the remainder to the co-conspirator. From 2003 to 2005 UMMC paid approximately $1.47 million in employee referral bonuses, of which about $317,811 was obtained fraudulently. The investigation is continuing.
The defendants face a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison followed by 3 years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine. U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett scheduled sentencing for DeShields on September 15, 2006 and 11:00 a.m. and for White on September 28, 2006 at 10:00 a.m.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the investigative work performed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and thanked the University of Maryland Medical System for their assistance. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Bonnie S. Greenberg and Sandra Wilkinson, who are prosecuting the case.
This page last modifiedJune 29, 2006