The owner of a Miami health care agency pleaded guilty for his participation in a $60 million home health Medicare fraud scheme, announced the Department of Justice, the FBI, and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
Rodolfo Nieto Jr., 40, of Miami, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge
Cecilia M. Altonaga in the Southern District of Florida to one count of
conspiracy to defraud the United States and to receive health care
According to the court documents, Nieto was the owner and operator of Ronat
Home Health Care Inc. According to court documents, during the time of the
conspiracy, Ronat was a Florida home health “staffing agency” that purported to
provide home health care and physical therapy services to eligible Medicare
beneficiaries. Ronat subsequently became a home health agency.
According to court documents, from approximately January 2006 to
approximately November 2009, Nieto accepted kickbacks in return for recruiting
Medicare beneficiaries to be placed at Nany Home Health Inc., a Miami home
health agency that purported to provide home health care and physical therapy
services to eligible Medicare beneficiaries. The owners and operators of Nany
paid Nieto kickbacks in return for allowing Nany to bill the Medicare program on
behalf of the patients Nieto had recruited through Ronat. Specifically, as part
of the scheme, Nany billed Medicare for home health services purportedly
provided by Ronat.
In a related case, on April 25, 2012, Roberto Gonzalez and Olga Gonzalez,
president and vice president of Nany, and their son, Fabian Gonzalez, all of
whom operated Nany, were sentenced to 120, 87, and 87 months in prison,
respectively, following their December 19, 2011 guilty pleas to one count each
of conspiracy to commit health care fraud. From approximately January 2006
through November 2009, Roberto, Olga, and Fabian Gonzalez and their
co-conspirators submitted approximately $60 million in false and fraudulent
claims to Medicare, and Medicare paid approximately $40 million on those
At sentencing, scheduled for October 23, 2012, Nieto faces a maximum penalty
of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000 or twice the pecuniary gain or
The plea was announced by Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the
Justice Department’s Criminal Division; U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer of the
Southern District of Florida; Jeffrey C. Mazanec, Acting Special Agent in Charge
of the FBI’s Miami Field Office; and Special Agent in Charge Christopher B.
Dennis of the HHS Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), Office of
Investigations, Miami Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Senior Trial Attorney Joseph S. Beemsterboer
of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section. The case was investigated by the FBI
and HHS-OIG and was brought as part of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force,
supervised by the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and the U.S. Attorney’s
Office for the Southern District of Florida.
Since its inception in March 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, now
operating in nine cities across the country, has charged more than 1,330
defendants who have collectively billed the Medicare program for more than $4
billion. In addition, HHS’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, working
in conjunction with HHS-OIG, is taking steps to increase accountability and
decrease the presence of fraudulent providers.
To learn more about the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action
Team (HEAT), go to: www.stopmedicarefraud.gov.
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Wednesday, August 15, 2012
Owner of Miami Home Health Company Pleads Guilty in $60 Million Health Care Fraud Scheme
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