Three Plead Guilty to Healthcare Fraud in Schemes That Totaled $6.5 Million Dollars in Fraudulent Claims
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Illinois
CHICAGO — A Chicago-area physical therapist, health care professional, and a personal trainer have pleaded guilty to one count of healthcare fraud each for scheming to defraud private insurers for payment of physical therapy and other services that were never rendered.
INESSA KATSNELSON, 55, of Glenview, also known as “Inessa Blinov,” “Inessa Danuchevsky” and “Inna,” a personal trainer and singer who worked out of a gym in Northbrook, participated in a scheme to defraud private health and auto insurers through multiple entities from 2006 to October 2018. Katsnelson provided names and insurance information for purported patients to those entities, knowing the entities would submit fraudulent claims to insurance companies for services never provided. In exchange for the use of their information, Katsnelson provided to some of the individuals she referred certain benefits, including free personal training sessions, massages, and the exhaustion of their annual health insurance deductibles, at no cost to them, through the fraudulent billing practices.
MAYA YAKUBOVICH, 56, of Arlington Heights, who worked as a medical claims biller for various health care facilities in Buffalo Grove, Northfield, Prospect Heights, Wheeling, Des Plaines, and Glenview, participated in the scheme with Katsnelson and others. From approximately 2006 to October 2018, Yakubovich knowingly prepared and submitted fraudulent claims, and at times created false medical records to support the claims. Yakubovich also provided names and insurance information for purported patients to one of the entities, and then submitted fraudulent claims to insurance companies for services never provided to the purported patients.
BEATTA KABBANI, 55, of Glenview, who was a licensed physical therapist, president, and secretary of a medical group located in Northfield and Glenview, pleaded guilty in a separate case based on her involvement in a related scheme. Between September 2011 and November 2016, Kabbani fraudulently submitted, and caused to be submitted, fraudulent claims to insurance companies. The claims falsely represented that certain healthcare services were provided to patients, when Kabbani knew that those services were not actually provided. The fraudulent claims identified Kabbani, a medical doctor, and another therapist as the service providers on dates when these three providers were not present at the healthcare facility. To substantiate the fraudulent claims Kabbani created, and caused the creation of, false medical records.
Katsnelson, Yakubovich, and Kabbani, along with their co-schemers, received a portion of the fraudulently obtained funds. In total, the indictment against Katsnelson, Yakubovich, and others alleges that nine insurance companies were defrauded out of approximately $6.5 million. Co-schemers whose charges are still pending are TETYANA VORONKINA, a medical claims biller, also known as “Tanya Voronkina,” 60, of Mundelein, and massage therapist VIKTOR DANCHUK, 62, of Roselle.
Sentencing for Katsnelson is scheduled for May 26, 2023 before U.S. District Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman. Yakubovich’s sentencing is scheduled for May 24, 2023 before U.S. District Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman. Kabbani’s sentencing has not yet been scheduled.
The plea agreements are announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Ruth M. Mendonça, Inspector-in-Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in Chicago; Irene Lindow, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Regional Office of the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General; and Robert W. Wheeler, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Heidi Manschreck and Chester Choi.
Updated March 2, 2023