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Third person charged in alleged $80 million healthcare fraud scheme

Third person charged in alleged $80 million healthcare fraud scheme
4 weeks 2 hours 6 minutes ago Friday, June 21 2024 Jun 21, 2024 June 21, 2024 5:13 PM June 21, 2024 in News - Local

A manager of a chain of physical therapy locations was arrested Thursday in McAllen in connection with an alleged scheme to defraud a federal worker’s compensation program, court records show.

Jessica Marie Kinser appeared in court on Thursday on a charge of conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud. Her bond was set at $75,000.

Kinser’s arrest is linked to the investigation into the Texas Federal Wellness Center clinics, according to an indictment.

The chain has locations in Brownsville, Corpus Christi, Edinburg, El Paso, Harlingen, Laredo and McAllen.

The investigation into the clinic began last year, when siblings Ricardo Cano and Rosita Cano Meeks were arrested and accused of using the clinics to bill more than $80 million to the Department of Labor Office of Worker’s Compensation Program for physical therapy services provided to injured federal employees.

READ ABOUT THE ARRESTS HERE

The alleged scheme took place between 2014 and 2019, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District of Texas.

“Cano and Meeks allegedly caused the clinics to submit inflated claims for therapy, fictional medical visits, excessive therapy and fraudulent durable medical equipment,” the news release stated. “The charges allege Cano and Meeks directed clinic employees to falsify patient checkout times on medical records to conceal the inflated therapy claims. Meeks was in charge of, and oversaw, the fraudulent billing, according to the indictment.”

The indictment identifies Kinser as a clinic employee who managed the employees and operations at various TFWC locations.

Cano, a physician’s assistant, was the owner of the clinic chain, the indictment stated. Helping Cano with the conspiracy was an unidentified Travis County doctor who oversaw, managed and controlled the clinics.

Cano and Meeks have pleaded not guilty to the charges. They are currently out on bond.

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