LAWFUEL – US Law News – R. Alexander Acosta, United States…

LAWFUEL – US Law News – R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Jonathan I. Solomon, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, announced that defendant Isis Machado pled guilty today to Superseding Indictment charging her with conspiracy to commit computer fraud, conspiracy to commit identity theft and conspiracy to wrongfully disclose individually identifiable health information, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 371.

Defendant Isis Machado, a front desk office coordinator at Cleveland Clinic, Weston, Florida, improperly obtained Medicare information and other demographic information about Cleveland Clinic patients in Naples, Florida, and sold that information to her cousin, co-defendant, Fernando Ferrer, of Naples, for $5 to $10 each. Machado improperly obtained the patient information of approximately 1,130 patients.

After obtaining the information, Machado provided copies of the computer printouts to Ferrer at a gas station in Miami Lakes, and received payment based on the number of patients she provided. The investigation revealed that various Medicare numbers that Machado obtained from Cleveland Clinic and provided to Ferrer were later used by medical providers in Miami to fraudulently bill Medicare for services not rendered and equipment not supplied, resulting in a $7 million fraud to Medicare.

Machado is scheduled to be sentenced on April 27, 2007, and faces a statutory maximum of 5 years’ imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, and may be ordered to pay restitution. Ferrer is scheduled to proceed to trial on January 22, 2007.

United States Attorney R. Alexander Acosta commended the work of the FBI in this investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Larry Bardfeld and Neil Karadbil.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. 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.

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