7 Arrested in Health Insurance Scam: Miami-Dade State Attorney

Authorities said they believe the health insurance scam began in 2008

By Karen Franklin
|  Thursday, Aug 16, 2012  |  Updated 9:06 PM EDT
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Miami-Dade Corrections

From left to right, beginning in the upper left corner: Nancy Maradey, Mercedes Rosario Alba, Bruno Pulcini, Jorge Luis Pujadas, Daniel Eladio Diaz, Jose Nunez and Ada Francis Garth.

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Six current and one former Miami-Dade County employees were arrested after authorities said they received payments for fake physical therapy sessions.

Nancy Maradey, 36, Mercedes Rosario Alba, 53, Bruno Pulcini, 53, Jorge Luis Pujadas, 35, Daniel Eladio Diaz, 29, Jose Nunez, 51, and Ada Francis Garth, 52, were arrested Wednesday, the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office said. The employees, who worked together at the Miami-Dade Transit Division, face charges including insurance fraud, patient brokering and grand theft.

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“I’m proud of the work done by this fraud-fighting team of prosecutors, police and insurance fraud investigators,” Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle said. “Every new case should throw additional ripples of fear and concern through those who think they can get away with this crime. Scammers should keep looking over their shoulders because the law is on the way.”

Authorities said they believe the health insurance scam began in 2008. The seven are accused of participating in a scheme that billed AvMed for fake physical therapy in the amount of $280,000, according to the office. Close to half of the money was paid through June 2010.

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Several employees allegedly recruited others to join the scheme, which resulted in additional cash referral amounts.

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