California woman sentenced for Medicare fraud
LOS ANGELES – A district judge has sentenced a Carson, Calif., woman to 13 years in federal prison for her role in an $8 million Medicare fraud case involving illegal kickbacks to marketers and doctors who wrote fraudulent prescriptions, according to a press release from the FBI. Uben Ogbu Rush, who owned or controlled six companies that ostensibly sold home medical equipment, took part in a scheme in which she paid marketers to recruit Medicare beneficiaries who would allow their identities and Medicare numbers to be used for the submission of false claims, the release stated. Evidence showed that Rush paid kickbacks to marketers, who in turn paid kickbacks to doctors, who wrote bogus prescriptions without examining patients, according to the release. During the course of the scheme, which ran from 1999 until 2008, Rush submitted more than $15 million in fraudulent claims for motorized wheelchairs, hospital beds, air pressure mattresses and other items for patients who did not need the equipment. Medicare paid more than $8.1 million on the claims. In addition to Rush’s sentencing, two marketing recruiters were sentenced to prison terms. A doctor involved in the scheme awaits sentencing.