Needless to say, our elderly population deserves our respect. Older adults deserve courtesy, kindness and when needed, helping hands with tasks that used to be simple for them. Helping an elderly person across the road, holding a door open for a senior and even providing assistance with getting up from seats are all acts of kindness we can show senior citizens.

Naturally, seniors also require health care at rates their younger counterparts do not. Not enough can be said about the great work being performed by physicians as well as nurses, home care providers and professional caregivers all over the country. They are vital to the health and well-being of older folks. This is especially true for seniors with mobility issues or debilitating illnesses.

Elder Care owners convicted of health care fraud.

For all of the factors listed above, people like Paul Emordi and Celestine “Tony” Okwilagwe could have led their lives as revered members of their communities. Instead, the two are among the most recent to be convicted of health care fraud. According to yesterday’s release from the United States Department of Justice, Okwilagwe and Emordi once owned and operated Elder Care, a Medicare and Medicaid provider in Garland, Texas.

The 52 year-old, Emordi was just sentenced to 60 months in prison following his October 2018 convictions for conspiracy to commit health care fraud. He was also sentenced to two years of supervised release and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $3,559,154.22. 

In the same six-day trial, 50 year-old, Okwilagwe and two other co-conspirators were convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud each. He and one co-conspirator, 60 year-old, Adetutu Etti, were also found guilty of two counts of making false statements in connection with a health care benefit program.

Both Emordi and Okwilagwe were excluded from participating in any federal health care benefit program.

Nevertheless, Etti, who worked as the administrator of Elder Care, concealed Okwilagwe’s ownership and Okwilagwe and Emordi’s exclusions from Medicare and Medicaid. 

“Etti signed false documents that indicated that no one associated with Elder Care was excluded and that another individual owned Elder Care, the evidence showed,” the DoJ report reveals. “The evidence further established that (49 year-old, Loveth) Isidaehomen, who is Okwilagwe’s wife, signed bank documents and wrote employee paychecks to conceal both Okwilagwe’s and Emordi’s involvement with Elder Care.”

The report goes on to reveal that both Okwilagwe and Emordi also engaged in a scheme to submit false and fraudulent bills to Medicare for services that were not needed. The pair, along with their co-conspirators, was originally convicted of their crimes in October of 2018. In a previous DoJ release, it was revealed that “evidence at trial demonstrated that Elder Care billed Medicare and Medicaid for over $3.7 million for claim reimbursements to which it was not entitled because Okwilagwe and Emordi were excluded from Medicare.”

Are you an attorney who is currently trying a health care fraud case?

Please don’t hesitate to contact Allegiant Experts to find out how our clinical expertise may help your case. Our experts have been providing expert clinical services for nearly two decades and can help your team by bridging the disciplines of medicine, coding and billing to ensure accurate payment and data is achieved. Give us a call at 407-217-5831 or email us at info@allegiantexperts.com.