Anchorage Woman Charged with $239,000 Healthcare Fraud
Anchorage, Alaska – U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced today that an Anchorage woman has been charged in a 20-count indictment alleging that she devised a scheme to defraud the state of Alaska Medicaid Program of over $239,000.00.
Mi Ran Yu, 40, of Anchorage was charged with a scheme to defraud by intentionally misrepresenting the health condition of her parents in order for them to receive “personal care assistant” benefits from the state of Alaska Medicaid Program. Personal care assistant benefits are available to those persons who qualify to receive them, such as the disabled elderly and the blind, and are designed to allow a person to receive assistance so that they can remain in their home rather than be placed in a skilled care setting. The indictment alleges that Yu herself received approval to provide personal care assistant services for her parents when she knew that they did not qualify for the Medicaid benefits. The indictment also alleges that through physical surveillance, it was documented that her parents’ health conditions had been greatly exaggerated as they were observed and videotaped riding bicycles, lifting heavy bags of potting soil, and walking significant distances unaided by another person or a device such as a walker or a cane. In addition, it is alleged that the surveillance documented that Yu had billed Medicaid for personal care assistant services which she had not provided to her parents.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Bottini, who presented the case to the grand jury, the law provides for a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, and a fine of $250,000.00. Restitution is also typically sought in such cases.
The State of Alaska Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and the Federal Bureau of Investigation conducted the investigation leading to the indictment in this case.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.