Thursday, December 20, 2012

Gurinder Mand Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Health Care Fraud


SAN JOSE, CA—Gurinder Mand pleaded guilty in federal court in San Jose on December 12, 2012, to conspiracy to commit health care fraud, United States Attorney Melinda Haag announced.

In pleading guilty, Mand admitted she knowingly and willfully conspired with the former owner of EZ Step pharmacy and others to submit false and fraudulent claims to health care benefit programs, including Medicare, Medi-Cal, and private insurance companies. The false and fraudulent claims included (1) seeking reimbursement for claims without prescriptions and by fabricating prescriptions and forging signatures of physicians on prescriptions; and (2) seeking reimbursement for the cost of licensed durable medical equipment (DME) and related prescription medications, benefits, items, and services, including by fabricating DME authorizations, certificates of medical necessity, and related documents, and forging the signatures of physicians and other authorized health care providers of beneficiaries on these documents.

Mand, 29, of San Jose, was indicted by a federal grand jury on June 30, 2011. She was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349; six counts of heath care fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1347; and two counts of obstruction of criminal investigation of health care investigations, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1518. Under the plea agreement, Mand pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud.

The sentencing of Mand is scheduled for April 3, 2013, at 9 a.m. before United States District Court Judge Lucy H. Koh in San Jose. The maximum statutory penalty for violation of conspiracy to commit health care fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349, is 10 years in prison; a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, which ever is greater; a term of supervised release of three years; and restitution. However, any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.

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