LOS ANGELES – A dockworker at the Port of Long Beach pleaded guilty today to participating in a scheme that submitted fraudulent bills to his labor union’s health insurance plan for sexual services or for physical therapy that never was provided.
Cameron Rahm, 39, of Pico Rivera, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud.
According to his plea agreement, Rahm obtained sexual services from women employed at three businesses: Back to Life Wellness Center LLC and The Chiroman Wellness Center – both based in San Pedro – and the Wilmington-based Waterfront Wellness Center Inc. These companies offered patients chiropractic services and acupuncture treatments, in addition to sexual services.
In exchange for receiving sexual services, Rahm authorized the conspiracy’s leader – Sara Victoria, 46, of San Pedro – to submit false claims to Rahm’s health plan run by his union, the International Longshore and Warehouse Union – Pacific Maritime Association. The ILWU-PMA benefit plan provided coverage for chiropractic services and generally covered all of the cost with no deductible and without requiring plan members receiving the services to contribute any copay amount or incur any other out-of-pocket costs.
From January 2017 to April 2021, Rahm authorized Victoria to submit false claims to the union’s health benefit plan under the name of his wife, who was a plan beneficiary. Rahm’s false and fraudulent claims that Victoria submitted to the ILWU-PMA plan were for services that were not actually rendered, including chiropractic and physical therapy services.
Rahm also requested $240 in cash per month from Victoria in exchange for his authorization for Victoria to submit additional false claims for reimbursement to the ILWU-PMA plan for services not rendered using his and his wife’s insurance information.
Victoria, aided and abetted by Rahm, submitted approximately $178,495 in fraudulent claims to the ILWU-PMA plan for services purportedly rendered to Rahm’s wife, for which for which the plan paid approximately $30,243.
United States District Judge Stanley Blumenfeld Jr. scheduled an April 25 sentencing hearing, at which time Rahm will face a statutory maximum sentence of 10 years in federal prison.
In December 2022, Victoria pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. In total, Victoria submitted approximately $2,110,920 in claims to the ILWU-PMA plan, for which the plan paid approximately $551,810. Her sentencing hearing is scheduled for April 14.
Four other dockworkers at the Port of Long Beach pleaded guilty to one felony count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and face up to 10 years in federal prison at their sentencing hearings:
- Rodolpho Bojorquez, 68, of Carson, who is to be sentenced on April 11;
- Cesar Delgadillo, 49, of Wilmington, who has a January 31 sentencing date;
- Joel Lizarraga, 55, of Palmdale, whose sentencing hearing is scheduled for February 28; and
- Simon Ramirez, 50, of Wilmington, who is scheduled for sentencing on January 24.
Three additional defendants – also dockworkers at the Port of Long Beach – each pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of theft in connection with health care. Each defendant faces a statutory maximum sentence of one year in federal prison:
- Clifford Hopson, 65, of the Willowbrook area of South Los Angeles, who is scheduled for sentencing on January 24;
- Rogelio Martinez, 53, of Torrance, whose sentencing hearing is scheduled for February 14; and
- Lawrence Robles, 42, of San Pedro, who is to be sentenced on February 28.
The FBI and the United States Department of Labor – Employee Benefits Security Administration investigated this matter.
Assistant United States Attorney Jason C. Pang of the Major Frauds Section is prosecuting this case.