Damian Williams, the United States Lawyer for the Southern District of New York, announced that CHRISTOPHER MARGAIT was sentenced right now to 65 months in prison for conspiracy to commit wellness care fraud by fraudulently trafficking in orders for sturdy health-related gear such as back, knee, and wrist braces. MARGAIT previously pled guilty to the charge and was sentenced right now ahead of United States District Judge Denise Cote.
U.S. Lawyer Damian Williams stated: “Christopher Margait faced justice right now for illegally promoting orders for sturdy health-related gear and hence defrauding Medicare of at least $7 million. Such fraud schemes do true harm to Medicare—a essential, taxpayer-funded plan that gives reasonably priced wellness care to individuals more than 65 or with disabilities.”
According to statements created in court and publicly filed documents in this case:
From at least August 2019 via May well 2021, MARGAIT and his co-defendant, Matthew Taylor Witkowski, engaged in a scheme to defraud Medicare by illegally getting and promoting fraudulent orders for sturdy health-related gear (“DME”) paid for by Medicare. Using a company that he jointly owned and operated with Witkowski, and a contact center that Witkowski operated in the Dominican Republic, MARGAIT illegally generated and bought fraudulent orders for DME and then sold these fraudulent orders to pharmacies and DME suppliers, such as suppliers in New York City. These pharmacies and DME suppliers then utilized these fraudulent orders as the basis for at least $7 million in fraudulent claims to Medicare. Many of these fraudulent orders utilized names and individual wellness information and facts of actual Medicare beneficiaries, without having the beneficiaries’ authorization or prior understanding. Many of these fraudulent orders also contained qualified information and facts of physicians and other wellness-care providers enrolled in the Medicare plan, as properly as the purported electronic signatures of these providers, which had been falsified and produced without having the authorization or understanding of these providers.
Throughout the course of the scheme, MARGAIT and Witkowski received much more than $three.eight million in illegal kickbacks from DME suppliers, who created these payments to Accurate Prospects Advertising, Inc., a business controlled by MARGAIT and Witkowski.
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MARGAIT, 45, of West Palm Beach, Florida, pled guilty on June two, 2022, to a single count of conspiracy to commit wellness care fraud. In addition, MARGAIT was sentenced to 3 years of supervised release and ordered to spend forfeiture of $three,853,442 and restitution of $7,000,000 to the Medicare plan.
Witkowski, 38, a U.S. citizen who resided in the Dominican Republic because he was in college, was sentenced on April 20, 2023 to 60 months in prison and 3 years of supervised release. He was also ordered to spend forfeiture of $four,065,995 and restitution of $eight,131,990 to the Medicare plan.
Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative perform of the Workplace of the Inspector Common of the U.S. Division of Wellness and Human Solutions.
This case is getting handled by the Office’s Complicated Frauds and Cybercrime Unit. Assistant U.S. Lawyer David Raymond Lewis is in charge of the prosecution.