August 20, 2009
McALLEN CARDIOLOGIST SENTENCED TO PRISION ON HEALTH CARE FRAUD VIOLATIONS
(McALLEN) – Fabian Aurignac, M.D., the owner and operator of Cardiology Care Center has been sentenced to prison for committing more than $1 million in Health Care Fraud for submitting false and fraudulent claims to both the Medicare and Medicaid health care programs, United States Attorney Tim Johnson and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott announced today.
Aurignac, 46, of McAllen, was sentenced today to 57 months incarceration and fined $20,000 by United States District Judge Randy Crane to be followed by a three-year-term of supervised release. In addition to the prison term, Aurignac, who has already forfeited $1.1 million dollars which represents the amount he was paid From January 2007 until October 2007 for the false and fraudulent claims he had submitted to Medicare and Medicaid, was also ordered by the court to forfeit an additional $7,187 seized from a bank account and a 1995 GMC recreational vehicle. Indicted in October 2008 and re-arraigned on a superseding indictment in May 2009, Aurignac pleaded guilty on May 8, 2009, to health care fraud.
At the time of his guilty plea, Aurignac admitted to defrauding two health care benefit programs, specifically Medicaid and Medicare, by means of false and fraudulent claims in connection with the use of unqualified medical personal and for billing for medical services not rendered as described in count eight of the superseding indictment. From July 12, 2007, through July 28, 2007, while vacationing in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Aurignac billed approximately $900,000 to Medicare and Medicaid for cardiac services he never performed and received approximately $260,000 in payments from Medicare/Medicaid for cardiac services that were either not performed or performed by unsupervised, unqualified personnel.
Aurignac has been in custody since his arrest in December 2008.
The investigation leading to the charges in this case was conducted by the FBI and the Texas Attorney General’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Carolyn Ferko prosecuted the case and AUSA Allan Hoffmann handled the civil forfeiture.
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