Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Workers Compensation Fraud By The Godfather What's Next

                       Peyman Heidary is a chiropractor known to call himself “The Godfather.”

Law enforcement authorities say Heidary is a crime boss beyond his alias, accusing him of masterminding one of the largest insurance fraud cases the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office has ever prosecuted.

Heidary, 44, of Riverside is charged with heading a criminal organization that established medical clinics in Riverside, Orange and Los Angeles counties and a law firm that submitted thousands of workers’ compensation claims for nonexistent or exaggerated injuries that billed insurance companies for at least $50 million, court records say.

Investigators from the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office and the State Fund had also been able to document a loss of $5 million to the State Fund as of July 23, court documents say.

District attorney spokesman John Hall said the amount that insurance companies actually paid to Heidary was less than $50 million.

The criminal complaint filed July 25 in Superior Court in Riverside lists Heidary’s aliases as Brian Heidary, The Godfather and Number One.

The District Attorney’s Office wouldn’t say how it learned of Heidary’s aliases, but a search of public records showed that Heidary indeed is the No. 1 person in many companies. He is listed as president of California Health Care Management in Corona, Anaheim and La Habra; The Best of California Promotions and Management in Corona, Fullerton and Orange; Heidary Chiropractic in Corona, Fullerton and Anaheim; Doctor’s Reports Inc. in Fullerton and La Habra; California Injury Lawyers in Corona; and California Lawyers Network in Industry.

Other records show Heidary as past managing member of Riverside Health Clinic, Corona Health Clinic and Santa Ana Health Clinic.

In Riverside, the Corona/Riverside Health Clinic on Riverwalk Parkway is shuttered. A notice from the landlord, to Riverside Health Care Management, orders the business to vacate. Delivery notices from UPS are stuck to the door.

Heidary is scheduled to be arraigned today in Superior Court in Riverside. Heidary and three of his employees have been charged with 22 counts each of making fraudulent claims for payment of a health care benefit in excess of $950.

Heidary and Cary David Abramowitz, 57, of Los Angeles were also charged with practicing medicine without certification. Heidary and Erica Torres, 31, of Riverside were charged with practicing law without a license. Heidary, Abramowitz, Torres, and Michael Angel Tuosto Jr., 62, of Long Beach all were charged with conspiracy to commit a crime. All charges are felonies.

Heidary is being held in lieu of $1.3 million bond. Abramowitz and Torres, who are scheduled to be arraigned Sept. 23, posted $50,000 bond and were released. Tuosto was being held in lieu of $50,000 bond and isto be arraigned today.

“Defendant is neither a medical doctor nor an attorney,” district attorney Senior Investigator William Hanley wrote in a court document. The medical clinics’ “main purpose is to milk money out of Workers’ Compensation Insurance Companies,” Hanley added.

The District Attorney’s Office investigated Heidary along with the State Fund and other state agencies, including the Franchise Tax Board, after State Fund investigators alerted the D.A.’s office to a suspected fraud, Hall said.

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