Licensed Attorney Sentenced to Prison For Defrauding Medicaid in Scheme Involving Personal Care Services

            WASHINGTON – Susan Engonwei Tingwei, 44, of Silver Spring, Md., a licensed legal professional, was sentenced as we speak to 10 months in jail for defrauding the D.C. Medicaid program out of greater than $100,000 in a scheme involving false claims about private care companies.

            The announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves, Wayne A. Jacobs, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office’s Criminal Division, Maureen R. Dixon, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General for the area that features Washington, D.C., and Daniel W. Lucas, Inspector General for the District of Columbia.

            Tingwei pleaded responsible in November 2021, within the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to well being care fraud. She was sentenced by the Honorable Carl J. Nichols. Following her jail time period, she will probably be positioned on two years of supervised launch. She additionally should pay $131,656 in restitution and an equivalent quantity in a forfeiture cash judgment.

            In court docket paperwork, Tingwei admitted that at varied instances between 2016 and 2018, she was employed by two totally different house well being companies within the District of Columbia. The house well being companies employed her to help D.C. Medicaid beneficiaries in performing actions of day by day residing, resembling getting out and in of mattress, bathing, dressing, and consuming.

            Tingwei was presupposed to doc the care that she offered to Medicaid beneficiaries on timesheets after which submit the timesheets to the house well being companies, which might in flip invoice Medicaid for the companies that she rendered. As a part of her responsible plea, Tingwei admitted that she submitted false timesheets claiming to offer companies that she didn’t really render.

            Tingwei earned her Master of Laws diploma from the University of Maryland in May 2017. She was admitted to the New York state bar in February 2018 and the Maryland state bar in January 2020.

            On 118 events between August 2016 and May 2017, Tingwei submitted timesheets claiming that she labored as a private care aide in Washington, D.C., throughout the identical hours when she both was scheduled to attend regulation faculty lessons in Baltimore, or when she ought to have been touring to or from Baltimore associated to her regulation faculty program. For instance, Tingwei submitted timesheets claiming that she offered companies to 2 beneficiaries on April 13, 2017, one from 7 a.m. to three p.m., and the opposite from 3:30 p.m. to eight:30 p.m. Records present Tingwei’s key card swiping in on the University of Maryland’s regulation faculty campus at 5:30 p.m. and swiping out at 9:29 p.m. Cell telephone data additionally confirmed her cellphone being in Baltimore between 8:03 a.m. and 9:31 p.m. that day.

            Tingwei admitted that her fraud scheme started no later than August 2016 and continued by way of September 2018. She acknowledged efficiently defrauding the D.C. Medicaid program out of $131,656.

            The FBI, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General, the District of Columbia’s Office of the Inspector General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office are dedicated to investigating and prosecuting people who defraud the D.C. Medicaid program.

            Since August 2018, 11 former private care aides have pleaded responsible to defrauding Medicaid within the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Six of these aides have been sentenced to 13 months in jail; a seventh was sentenced to serve 15 months.

            The authorities urges the general public to offer tips and help to cease well being care fraud.

            If you have got details about people committing well being care fraud, please name the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General hotline at (800) HHS‑TIPS [(800) 447-8477] or the D.C. Office of the Inspector General at (800) 724-TIPS [(800) 274-8477].

            This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kondi Kleinman and former Assistant U.S. Attorney Denise Simmonds, with help from Paralegal Specialist Michon Tart and former Paralegal Specialists Angeline Thekkumthala and Brittany Phillips.

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