From the Houston HealthCare Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team and the Department of Justice:
WASHINGTON – An assistant administrator of a Houston hospital was arrested today on charges related to his alleged participation in a $116 million Medicare fraud scheme involving false claims for mental health treatment, announced the Department of Justice, the FBI and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
An indictment filed in the Southern District of Texas and unsealed today charges Mohammed Khan, 62, of Houston, with one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud, one count of conspiracy to pay and receive illegal health care kickbacks and five counts of paying or offering to pay health care kickbacks. Khan is expected to make his initial appearance in federal court today in Houston.
“The indictment against Mr. Kahn alleges that he used his position as a hospital assistant administrator to submit millions in false claims to the Medicare program,” said Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “According to the charges, he paid kickbacks to patient recruiters, owners of group homes and assisted living facilities, and beneficiaries so that he could fill his hospital with patients for whom he could bill the government for medically unnecessary services or services that were never provided. We will continue aggressively to pursue individuals who attempt to enrich themselves at the expense of the Medicare program.”
“The defendant charged in this indictment is accused of stealing precious Medicare resources by billing for services that were medically unnecessary or never provided," said Special Agent in Charge Stephen L. Morris of the FBI’s Houston Field Office. “Our health care fraud efforts have never been more collaborative and aggressive. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to protect patients and fight against health care fraud.”
According to the indictment, Khan, as the assistant administrator of a Houston hospital, allegedly operated a scheme to defraud Medicare beginning in 2008 and continuing until his arrest today. Khan allegedly caused the submission of false and fraudulent claims for partial hospitalization program (PHP) services to Medicare through the hospital. A PHP is a form of intensive outpatient treatment for severe mental illness.
The indictment alleges that Khan paid kickbacks to owners and operators of group care homes and assisted living facilities and to patient recruiters in exchange for delivering ineligible Medicare beneficiaries to the hospital’s PHPs. The indictment alleges that Khan also paid kickbacks to Medicare beneficiaries who attended the hospital’s PHPs. These kickbacks included cigarettes, food and coupons redeemable for items available at the hospital’s “country stores.” Khan and his co-conspirators submitted or caused to be submitted approximately $116 million in claims to Medicare for PHP services purportedly provided by the hospital to the recruited beneficiaries, when in fact, the PHP services were medically unnecessary or never provided.