Bergen County, N.J., Doctor Charged With Tax Violations
Allegedly Made Millions of Dollars in Cash Deposits; Transferred Ownership of Home to Family Member; and Failed to File Tax Returns
NEWARK – A Bergen County, N.J., doctor who owns three immediate care facilities in Hudson County, N.J., was arrested today on multiple tax violations, including allegedly making cash deposits of more than $5.8 million into bank accounts he controlled, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.
Medhat El Amir, 59, of Saddle River, N.J., was indicted April 10, 2014, by a federal grand jury on one count of corruptly endeavoring to impede the due administration of the internal revenue code, four counts of tax evasion and three counts of failure to file tax returns. He was arrested at his home this morning by agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General. He is scheduled to make his initial court appearance this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Joseph A. Dickson in Newark federal court.
According to the Indictment:
El Amir was a primary care doctor and 60 percent owner of Immediate Care P.C., (Immediate), which provided urgent care health services for its patients at an office in North Bergen, N.J., and two offices in Jersey City.
From Feb. 11, 2005, through Dec. 31, 2010, El Amir allegedly attempted to impede the internal revenue code in a number of ways. He fraudulently transferred his residence in Saddle River to his sister, identified only as “A.E.A.,” for $2.5 million to keep the property out of the reach of the IRS while continuing to live there. He also cashed checks made out to Immediate at a check cashing facility and deposited that unreported income into a number of bank accounts he controlled and used the money for personal expenses. During a four-year period, El Amir received checks totaling $7,261,084 from insurance companies for medical treatments provided by Immediate and caused $5,836,298 in cash to be deposited into 15 bank accounts he maintained and/or controlled.
El Amir also allegedly filed a false 2008 personal income tax return, claiming interest deductions to which he was not entitled, and sent fraudulent correspondence to the IRS that under-reported the amount of income he and his wife received from Immediate in calendar year 2008 and the amount of income deductions to which he was entitled.
Despite earning a significant income through Immediate, El Amir did not file a personal income tax return, Form 1040, for calendar years 2007, 2009 and 2010. While El Amir did file a personal income Form 1040 for calendar year 2008, this return substantially under-reported the income El Amir received from Immediate in calendar year 2008.
The count of corruptly endeavoring to impede the due administration of the internal revenue code carries a maximum potential penalty of three years in prison and a $5,000 fine. The counts of tax evasion each carry a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine and the counts of failure to file a tax return each carry a maximum potential penalty of one year in prison and a $25,000 fine.
U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the IRS-Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge Jonathan D. Larsen, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Tom O’Donnell, with the investigation leading to today’s indictment.
U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman reorganized the health care fraud practice at the New Jersey U.S. Attorney’s Office shortly after taking office, including creating a stand-alone Health Care and Government Fraud Unit to handle both criminal and civil investigations and prosecutions of health care fraud offenses. Since 2010, the office has recovered more than $535 million in health care fraud and government fraud settlements, judgments, fines, restitution and forfeiture under the False Claims Act, the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act and other statutes.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Deborah J. Gannett of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Health Care and Government Fraud Unit in Newark.