|By Aisling Swift, Naples Daily News, Fla.|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
This week, one of five defendants involved in a large insurance fraud scheme run out of a
"It basically was a fraud factory and they paid people to actually be patients," Statewide Prosecutor
Prosecutors say the alleged ringleader, Feghen Delva, 44, a chiropractic assistant, set up Cardinal Chiropractic Center on
They say he paid Samaliazad and another chiropractor a monthly fee to be straw owners to avoid state licensing requirements. Samaliazad worked in
The clinic initially began in
"Insurance companies were being billed for people who weren't even in the country. They were in
Court records provide this account:
Delva hired recruiters to find Hispanics to be at-fault drivers, paid to crash into vehicles. Haitians were recruited to be in vehicles that were hit, those deemed not at fault, and they became patients. But they never forked over a 20 percent copay. Instead, Delva paid them
Patients and others involved in the crashes flocked to the clinic on Fridays to get paid.
Chiropractors and massage therapists "upcoded" and double-billed for treatments, some of which were never administered. When Samaliazad and massage therapist
Investigators interviewed employees, former employees and patients and on
Last week, Greenhut, 54, pleaded guilty. Dolcine, 38, pleaded guilty in November to obtaining more than
Delva and office manager
In Samaliazad's taped statement, which was played for jurors, he said when he discovered the fraud, he confronted Delva and told him the patient payments and bogus billings had to stop. He said he was unaware of the fraud when he signed claim forms, and quit in late 2009.