Thursday, August 27, 2009

New York Chiropractor Pleaded Guilty To Defrauding Private Insurance Companies

On August 21, 2009, chiropractor Michael Horowitz, a chiropractor, pleaded guilty in Manhattan Federal court to a scheme to defraud insurance companies of more than $750,000 by billing for medical services that were not performed. The plea was to one count of conspiracy to commit health care and mail fraud (Count Three of the Indictment) before United States Magistrate Judge James C. Francis IV.

According to the Complaint, the Indictment to which Dr. Horowitz, D.C., pleaded guilty, and statements made in court: Dr. Horowitz, D.C., practiced chiropractics at "Horowitz Family Chiropractic" in downtown Manhattan. In February 2002, Christopher Green joined Dr. Horowitz and opened "Wall Street Chiropractic" on Wall Street in New York City.

From at least 2003 to December 2006, it was alleged that Horowitz and Green defrauded insurance companies including, Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield, AETNA, and CIGNA. Specifically, it was alleged that the two billed insurance companies for providing chiropractic treatments that were not in fact provided. We see many cases where Medicare and Medicaid (Medi-Cal) fraud is prosecuted, but medical fraud cases where private insurers are the alleged victims are also on the rise.

In his plea, Dr. Horowitz admitted to false billings totaling $773,099.18. Christopher Green had plead guilty in August 2007 to participating in the same health care fraud conspiracy. Thus, it appeared that Green had plead out early was cooperating against Horowitz. Sentencing is set for December 3, 2009 by United States District Judge Richard M. Berman.

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