Physician Pleads Guilty in Medicaid Fraud Conspiracy
A California man pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to commit health care fraud.
According to court documents, Keyvan Amirikhorheh, M.D, 61, of Seal Beach, worked as a physician at Los Angeles Community Clinic. Together with his co-defendants, Amirikhorheh defrauded the Family Planning, Access, Care and Treatment (Family PACT) program administered by Medi-Cal, the California Medicaid program, by submitting and causing the submission of fraudulent claims for family planning services, diagnostic testing, and prescriptions for non-existent patients.
Amirikhorheh is the final defendant to plead guilty. Hilda Haroutunian, 61, of Sun Valley, California pleaded guilty on Sept. 25, 2020, and is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 17; Lorraine Watson, 57, a physician’s assistant, of Valley Village, California, pleaded guilty on Oct. 9, 2020, and is scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 10; Edmond Sarkisyan, 41, of North Hollywood, California, pleaded guilty on Jan. 29, and is scheduled to be sentenced on July 16; and Noem Sarkisyan, 65, of North Hollywood, California, pleaded guilty on March 5, 2020, and is scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 3.
As alleged in court documents, between approximately March 2016 and April 2019, Los Angeles Community Clinic and associated laboratories and pharmacies submitted approximately $8,406,204 in claims to Medi-Cal and were paid approximately $6,660,028 as the result of this fraudulent scheme.
Amirikhorheh pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit health care fraud. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 1, and faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicholas L. McQuaid of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; Acting U.S. Attorney Tracy L. Wilkison of the Central District of California; Assistant Director in Charge Kristi Koons Johnson of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office; Special Agent in Charge Timothy DeFrancesca of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General’s (HHS-OIG) Los Angeles Regional Office; and Special Agent in Charge Kris Lyle of the California Department of Justice made the announcement.
The FBI, Department of Health and Human Services-Office of Inspector General, and California Department of Justice are investigating the case, which was charged as part of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, under the supervision of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.
Trial Attorneys Alexis Gregorian and Claire Yan of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section are prosecuting the case.
The Fraud Section leads the Medicare Fraud Strike Force. Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, which maintains 15 strike forces operating in 24 districts, has charged more than 4,200 defendants who have collectively billed the Medicare program nearly $19 billion.