Metairie Chiropractic Owner Indicted for Health Care Fraud, Aggravated Identity Theft, and Making a False Statement
NEW ORLEANS – U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans announced that BENJAMIN TEKIPPE (TEKIPPE), age 37, a resident of New Orleans, Louisiana, was charged on September 30, 2021 with health care fraud, aggravated identity theft, and making a false statement.
According to the Indictment, TEKIPPE was a licensed chiropractor in Louisiana. TEKIPPE owned and operated his own practice, Metairie Chiropractic, located in Metairie, Louisiana, where he purported to provide chiropractic services to patients.
TEKIPPE knowingly participated in a scheme to defraud a health care benefit program, in connection with the delivery of and payment for health care benefits and services.
TEKIPPE submitted, and caused to be submitted, fraudulent claims to health care benefit programs that falsely represented that certain health care services were provided to patients, when TEKIPPE knew that those services were not actually provided.
On various dates in 2019, TEKIPPE submitted, or caused to be submitted, claims for payment which were not provided. In addition, TEKIPPE knowingly used or caused to be used, without lawful authority, a means of identification of another person, specifically insurance members’ unique member identification numbers, to bill for services which were not provided.
On or about July 22, 2020, TEKIPPE did knowingly and willfully make a materially false, fictitious, and fraudulent statement to Special Agents of the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
If convicted of health care fraud, TEKIPPE faces a possible maximum sentence of 10 years imprisonment and up to three years of supervised release. If convicted of aggravated identity theft, TEKIPPE faces a possible sentence of 2 years of imprisonment to be run consecutively to any other sentence and up to one year of supervised release, . If convicted of making a false statement, TEKIPPE faces a possible maximum sentence of 5 years imprisonment and up to three years of supervised release. For each offense, TEKIPPE faces up to a $250,000 fine and a mandatory $100 special assessment fee.
The case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and The Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General.
An indictment is merely a charge and the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
The prosecution of the case is being handled by Assistant United States Attorney Kathryn McHugh.