Bassem Kuran, 23, of Philadelphia, PA, was sentenced today to ten months in prison for making false statements to Medicare through VIP Ambulance, Inc., an ambulance company that Kuran owned and which he served as President. The Honorable Gerald J. Pappert, United States District Judge, ordered that upon Kuran’s release from prison, he must serve three years of supervised release, and further ordered Kuran to pay restitution to Medicare in the total amount of $66,901.93.
At his guilty plea hearing, Kuran admitted that through his company, VIP, he submitted false billings for the purported transport of three patients that VIP did not actually transport. He also submitted billings for patients who were able to walk and could travel safely by means other than ambulance and who, therefore, were not eligible for ambulance transportation under Medicare requirements. As a result of the fraudulent scheme at VIP, the Medicare program paid nearly $67,000 for fraudulent claims from VIP for these three patients.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the U.S. Department of Labor Office of the Inspector General. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Mary E. Crawley and Paul W. Kaufman.