Former Personal Care Aide Sentenced 13 Months in Prison for Health Care Fraud
WASHINGTON – Mobolaji Tina Stewart, 58, of Laurel, Maryland, was sentenced yesterday to 13 months in prison for engaging in a scheme to defraud the District of Columbia’s Medicaid program.
The announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu, Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Timothy M. Dunham, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Washington Field Office, Criminal Division, Maureen R. Dixon, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), for the region that includes Washington, D.C., and Daniel W. Lucas, District of Columbia Inspector General.
Stewart pled guilty in August 2018, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to one count of health care fraud. She was sentenced by the Honorable John D. Bates. Following her prison term, Stewart will be placed on three years of supervised release. In addition, she was ordered to pay $534,073 in restitution and $302,414 in a forfeiture money judgment.
Stewart worked as a personal care aide for twelve home health agencies at various times between January 2014 and December 2018. The home health agencies employed Stewart to assist D.C. Medicaid beneficiaries in performing activities of daily living, such as getting in and out of bed, bathing, dressing, and eating. Stewart was supposed to document the care she provided to the Medicaid beneficiaries on timesheets and then submit the timesheets to the home health agencies, which would in turn bill Medicaid for the services that she rendered.
Between January 2014 and November 2018, Stewart caused the D.C. Medicaid Program to issue payments totaling $534,073 for services that she did not render. As part of her fraud scheme, she paid kickbacks to beneficiaries and submitted false timesheets to different home health agencies claiming that she provided 24 hours or more of personal care aide services. She also submitted false timesheets claiming to have provided personal care aide services while she was out of the country. She also submitted false timesheets claiming to have provided personal care aide services to a beneficiary while he was hospitalized. Stewart fraudulently earned more than $300,000 in wages as a result of the healthcare fraud scheme.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Liu, Assistant Attorney General Benczkowski, Special Agent in Charge Dunham, Special Agent in Charge Dixon of U.S. HHS-OIG, and District of Columbia Inspector General Lucas commended the work of those who investigated the case from the FBI’s Washington Field Office, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, and the District of Columbia Office of Inspector General. They also expressed appreciation for the work of Paralegal Specialist Mariela Andrade, and former Paralegal Specialists Brittany Phillips and Robert Fishman. Finally, they commended the work of Assistant U.S. Attorney Kondi Kleinman and Trial Attorney Amy Markopoulos, who investigated and prosecuted the case.