A kickback scheme designed to defraud Medicare has landed Butler Moultrie, the operator of a Fort Lauderdale-area halfway house, in prison for 33 months. After he serves his prison term, he will be subject to 3 years supervision. He will also be required to pay $801,000 in restitution.
The kickback scheme improperly funneled patients to American Therapeutic Corp. (ATC). Moultrie admitted that he referred residents of the halfway house to ATC where they would purportedly receive mental health treatment called partial hospitalization program (PHP). Moultrie admitted that he knew this treatment had not been ordered by a doctor, and he knew that the kickbacks that he received in exchange were illegal. Moultrie also knew that ATC would fraudulently bill Medicare for the unauthorized treatment. Moultrie’s part in the scheme is estimated to have cost Medicare $1.9 million in false claims.
Moultrie’s halfway house was not the only one that ATC had involved in its Medicare fraud scheme. Eleven other patient recruiters have already been convicted, and eight have been sentenced to jail time. Several others associated with ATC have plead guilty, been convicted, or are scheduled for trial in the coming months.
As part of this conspiracy, ATC paid millions of dollars in kickbacks for unauthorized referrals of patients for mental health services, and ATC and its affiliate operation billed Medicare over $200 million for medically unnecessary services.