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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Maryland

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Bowie Man Pleads Guilty to Misusing a Social Security Number to Fraudulently Obtain a Medical License

Used Four Different Social Security Numbers Under Three Different Names

Greenbelt, Maryland – Oluwafemi Charles Igberase, a/k/a Charles John Nosa Akoda, age 54, of Bowie, Maryland, pleaded guilty on November 15, 2016, to misusing a Social Security Account number to fraudulently obtain a medical license in Maryland.

The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Andre R. Watson of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); Special Agent in Charge Michael McGill of the Social Security Administration - Office of Inspector General, Philadelphia Field Division; Special Agent in Charge Nicholas DiGiulio, Office of Investigations, Office of Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services; Special Agent in Charge Drew Grimm of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management - Office of Inspector General; Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; and Chief Hank Stawinski of the Prince George’s County Police Department.

According to his plea agreement, Igberase entered the United States in October 1991 on a nonimmigrant visa.  In November 1991, January 1995, and September 1998, Igberase obtained fraudulent social security numbers using other names and false identifying information.  Between 1992 and 1998, Igberase obtained three certifications from the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) under different names, dates of birth and fraudulent social security numbers, in order to practice medicine and get into a residency program in the United States.  The ECFMG Committee on Medical Education Credential subsequently revoked or suspended two certifications in December 1995, after learning that they were fraudulently obtained.  In 1998, after receiving his third ECFMG certification in the name Charles John Nosa Akoda, Igberase was admitted to a residency program in New Jersey.  Igberase was dismissed from the program two years later after officials learned that the social security number he used did not belong to him. 

In 2011, Igberase also used the third social security number to fraudulently apply for federal education loans for his children.  That same year, using a fourth fraudulent social security number that belonged to another individual, and other fraudulent documents in the name Charles John Nosa Akoda, Igbergase obtained a medical license in Maryland, after completing a U.S. residency program.  He went on to practice obstetrics and gynecology and obtained medical privileges at a hospital in Prince George’s County.

In 2012, Igberase, using the Akoda identity, submitted a Medicare Enrollment Application, which was denied based in part on their determination that Igberase did not provide an accurate social security number.

A search warrant executed at Igberase’s residence recovered a false social security card in the Akoda name, a false Nigerian passport for Akoda, a false U.S. visa in the Akoda name, and fraudulent or altered documents related to immigration, medical diplomas, medical transcripts, letters of recommendation and birth certificates.

Igberase and the government have agreed that if the Court accepts the plea agreement Igberase will be sentenced to six months in prison, followed by six months of home detention as part of three years of supervised release.  U.S. District Judge Paul W. Grimm has scheduled sentencing for February 27, 2017 at 1:00 p.m.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended HSI Baltimore, the Offices of Inspector General for the Social Security Administration, Department of Health and Human Services and Office of Personnel Management, the FBI, and Prince George’s County Police Department for their work in the investigation.  Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kelly O’Connell Hayes and Michael T. Packard, who are prosecuting the case.

Updated November 16, 2016