Psych Crime Reporter

May 21, 2013

Psychiatrist Mikhail Presman charged in $4 million Medicare fraud scam

Filed under: Uncategorized — Psych Crime Reporter @ 11:57 am

Brooklyn psychiatrist Mikhail L. Presman, 55, was charged yesterday for attempting to bilk Medicare for more than $4 million in false bills, including for visits he claimed to make while actually on vacation, prosecutors said.

The bust was part of a nationwide takedown that led to charges against 89 individuals in eight cities for their alleged participation in separate Medicare fraud schemes that charged the program with approximately $223 million in false bills. Presman was the only Brooklyn resident charged.

According to prosecutors, Presman submitted fraudulent claims to the Medicare program for more than $4 million for home medical visits he never made. Authorities say that Presman claimed to have treated some patients when he was on vacation. He also billed for home visits made to patients who, prosecutors say, were hospitalized at the time of he supposed visits.

As a result of the schemes, Presman, who is also a psychiatrist also employed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, received more than $2.8 million in Medicare payments. When investigators searched an address listed as his office, at 29 Van Sicklen Street, they instead found that it was Presman’s personal residence.

“[Presman] allegedly billed for home visits when the patients were hospitalized and therefore not home, or when he himself was on vacation and not working,” said FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge George Venizelos in a press release. ”Medicare fraud threatens the vitality of the program and unjustly enriches lawbreakers, and it won’t be tolerated.”

The national bust included raids and arrests in eight cities, including Miami, Chicago, Tampa, Detroit, Houston, New Orleans and Los Angeles. It’s the sixth national takedown since the formation of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, a joint initiative between the Department of Justice and Health and Human Services provisioned for by the Affordable Care Act. Nationwide, strike force operations have lead to charges against more than 1,500 defendants who have falsely billed Medicare for more than $5 billion since its creation in 2007.

Locally, it has led to several arrests in Southern Brooklyn, including: a Brighton Beach doctor who allegedly billed $3.5 million in services never rendered, including more than 85 hemorrhoidectomies on one patient in 20 months; three doctors working out of the Sadkhin Complex at 2306 Avenue U; and five individuals from three Bensonhurst medical clinics.

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