Brea Woman to Be Sentenced in $6M Health Care Fraud Scheme

 In blog, Crime –

Brea Woman to Be Sentenced in $6M Health Care Fraud Scheme

by Contributing Editor

A Brea woman who played a role in a $6 million health care fraud scheme in which she and her husband billed Medicare for occupational therapy services that were not provided faces a possible federal prison term at sentencing Thursday.

Grace Hong, 54, was convicted last year in Los Angeles federal court of conspiracy and three counts of health care fraud, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

The government recommends a low-end sentence of 41 months, followed by three years’ supervised release, a special assessment of $400, and an order that she is obligated to pay $2.4 million in restitution to Medicare. The defense is asking for probation or, at worst, home confinement.

Simon and Grace Hong, who operated JH Physical Therapy in Walnut, billed Medicare for treatment not provided. Instead, Medicare beneficiaries received acupuncture and massage services, which were not reimbursable by Medicare, according to the government.

Grace Hong was also found guilty of directing co-conspirator therapists to falsify medical records to make it appear as if the services had actually been provided and funneling most of the Medicare reimbursements to companies owned by her 58-year-old husband.

Through the scheme, the conspirators billed Medicare from October 2009 until December 2012 about $6 million in false claims, and received roughly $3.9 million, evidence showed.

Simon Hong is serving more than 10 years behind bars for his role in two cases.

Keith Canlapan, 41, of West Covina, pleaded guilty to the conspiracy count and is awaiting sentencing in downtown Los Angeles.

Co-defendant Henry Penaranda, 40, formerly of Pasadena, is a fugitive, and in a related case, Roderick Concepcion, 45, of Anaheim, pleaded guilty to health care fraud and is set to be sentenced next month.

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All credit goes to Contributing Editor
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