Podiatrist Sentenced to Prison for Medicare Fraud Scheme
TUCSON, Ariz. – On May 17, 2019, Loren Wessel, 55, a resident of Tucson, was sentenced by United States District Judge James A. Soto for his role in a Medicare fraud scheme. Wessel had previously pleaded guilty to Health Care Fraud.
From 2008 through June 2016, Wessel, a licensed podiatrist, engaged in a scheme to defraud Medicare out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. In his plea agreement, Wessel admitted he submitted false claims to Medicare. As part of his practice, Wessel regularly provided routine podiatry care for patients at assisted living facilities in and around Tucson, but fraudulently billed Medicare for more complex and significantly more expensive services that he had not performed. To further his scheme and conceal the fraud, Wessel also falsely documented patients’ medical records with alleged ailments they did not have and with care Wessel did not provide.
In addition to serving a 24-month term of imprisonment, the Court ordered Wessel to pay $965,985 in restitution to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
The investigation in this case was conducted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The prosecution was handled by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Tucson.
CASE NUMBER: CR-17-00978-TUC-JAS (LCK)
RELEASE NUMBER: 2019-065_Wessel
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