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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, July 25, 2016

Miami-Dade Psychiatrist Sentenced to Prison for His Participation in Various Fraud Schemes

Fernando Mendez Villamil, a Miami-Dade psychiatrist was sentenced by United States District Judge Frederico A. Moreno to 151 months in prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release, for his participation in various schemes to defraud the United States government. Villamil was also ordered to pay $50,697,081 in restitution.

Wifredo A. Ferrer, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Shimon Richmond, Special Agent in Charge, Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), Pam Bondi, Florida Attorney General, Margaret Moore-Jackson, Special Agent in Charge, Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General (SSA-OIG), Robert C. Hutchinson, Acting Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI), Miami Field Office, George L. Piro, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, and Linda M. Swacina, District Director, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), made the announcement.

Villamil, 48, of South Miami, previously pled guilty to conspiracy to commit health care and wire fraud, in violation of Title18, United States Code, 1349, conspiracy to defraud the United States and make false statements with respect to immigration matters, in violation of Title18, United States Code, 371, conspiracy to defraud the government with respect to claims, in violation of Title18, United States Code, 286, for his participation in a scheme to defraud Medicare, Medicaid, the SSA, and USCIS.

According to court documents, Villamil, a licensed psychiatrist with a medical office in Miami-Dade, conspired with Maritza Exposito, 57, and Yomara Vila, 45, both of Miami, and Arnaldo O Jimenez, of Hialeah, and provided false and fraudulent mental health diagnoses to thousands of individuals seeking to obtain disability benefits and waivers from the civic and language requirements of the U.S. citizenship and naturalization process. Villamil did so in exchange for bribes and kickback payments and the ability to submit false claims to Medicare and Medicaid for medication management visits that were not needed and were not provided. Villamil also issued prescriptions for medications that were not needed to support a false disability claim and cause Medicare and Medicaid to pay for the unnecessary medications. Through the fraudulent scheme the co-conspirators sought an excess of $62.8 million dollars from various governmental programs run by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Florida Medicaid program, the SSA and USCIS.

Villamil’s three co-conspirators previously pled guilty and were sentenced for their conduct. Maritza Exposito was sentenced on May 13, 2016 to 48 months in prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release and was ordered to pay $33,551,022 in restitution. Yomara Vila was sentenced on May 10, 2016 to 33 months in prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release and was ordered to pay $502,626 in restitution. Arnaldo Jimenez, who plead guilty to providing false statements to the Social Security Administration, in his own disability benefit determination process, was sentenced to 6 months in prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release and was ordered to pay $248,211 in restitution.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force and participating partners, including HHS-OIG, SSA-OIG, the State of Florida’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, ICE-HSI, FBI, and USCIS. The case was prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Hagerenesh Simmons.

Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

Updated April 13, 2017