News

U.S.

Feds Charge Doctor With Committing $26 Million Medicare Fraud to Fund Foreign Political Ambitions

(Pixabay)

A Florida doctor allegedly defrauded Medicare, Medicaid and other health insurance programs for more than $26 million, which he pocketed to fund his political ambitions in Ghana, according to federal prosecutors.

Dr. Moses D. Degraft-Johnson pled guilty in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida to several criminal charges, including health care fraud and conspiracy to commit health care fraud.

Degraft-Johnson, who headed the Heart and Vascular Institute of Northern Florida in Tallahassee, filed false claims to health insurance agencies between September 21, 2015 and February 4 of this year, collecting payments for medical procedures he claimed to have performed but never did, investigators with the Department of Health and Human Services found.

The doctor falsely claimed to have performed more than 3,600 atherectomies, a minimally invasive surgery that clears out arteries. He also fraudulently billed insurers for angioplasties, a similar procedure.

“He used his access to the hospital’s daily census to poach patients for his scheme to defraud, instructing his staff to cold call patients from the hospital so that he could use their presence to fraudulently bill health care programs,” prosecutors stated in court filings.

Prosecutors said Degraft-Johnson said his “ultimate long-term professional goal” was to become president of Ghana. He had “been hard at work using the proceeds of fraud in the United States to establish an empire in a foreign country,” according to court documents. Investigators discovered that a relative of Degraft-Johnson held the office of vice president of Ghana in the 1980s.

The doctor also traveled to Ghana and other countries while claiming to be in his office performing the procedures, and sent about $1.8 million to people in Ghana, according to the Associated Press.

Prosecutors deemed Degraft-Johnson a flight risk because of his foreign ambitions, and the judge agreed, ordering him to be kept in custody until his trial begins on March 23.

Send a tip to the news team at NR.

Most Popular

Elections

‘Slipping and Sliding down the Polls’

This is an excerpt from episode 233 of The Editors. Rich: So Jim Geraghty, I have the RealClearPolitics Biden versus Trump polling page up right here. I’m just going to read you some numbers going back to . . . This is a CNBC poll from the 10th and 12th of June. And I’m just going to run through to the ... Read More
Elections

‘Slipping and Sliding down the Polls’

This is an excerpt from episode 233 of The Editors. Rich: So Jim Geraghty, I have the RealClearPolitics Biden versus Trump polling page up right here. I’m just going to read you some numbers going back to . . . This is a CNBC poll from the 10th and 12th of June. And I’m just going to run through to the ... Read More

Stalin, Famine, and the New York Times

‘The world is being invaded by monsters, but I suppose you don’t want to hear about that,” Both clauses of that sentence are devastatingly true: The reference is equally to the horrors of the Soviet Union’s mass murders -- and to the West’s determination to turn its back to the monstrosity. The speaker ... Read More

Stalin, Famine, and the New York Times

‘The world is being invaded by monsters, but I suppose you don’t want to hear about that,” Both clauses of that sentence are devastatingly true: The reference is equally to the horrors of the Soviet Union’s mass murders -- and to the West’s determination to turn its back to the monstrosity. The speaker ... Read More

Hamilton on the Wrong Side of Cinema

Disney’s presentation of the Broadway blockbuster Hamilton marks a curious cultural turning point: The most heralded production in recent Broadway history has not been adapted into a movie — it’s a digital video recording of a 2016 stage performance — because it has to live up to its hype as an exclusive ... Read More

Hamilton on the Wrong Side of Cinema

Disney’s presentation of the Broadway blockbuster Hamilton marks a curious cultural turning point: The most heralded production in recent Broadway history has not been adapted into a movie — it’s a digital video recording of a 2016 stage performance — because it has to live up to its hype as an exclusive ... Read More

The Year of Stupid

It turned out that the novel coronavirus was only the second-most-infectious disease to spread through the U.S. this year. Satan’s Cupcake has, after all, been diagnosed in less than 1 percent of Americans. The not-so-novel imbecility virus is, on the other hand, ravaging the minds of everyone from news ... Read More

The Year of Stupid

It turned out that the novel coronavirus was only the second-most-infectious disease to spread through the U.S. this year. Satan’s Cupcake has, after all, been diagnosed in less than 1 percent of Americans. The not-so-novel imbecility virus is, on the other hand, ravaging the minds of everyone from news ... Read More