A former Florida resident living in Puerto Rico has been charged for his role in a $101 million durable medical equipment (DME) kickback scheme. Raheel Naviwala, 34, was charged with conspiracy to violate the federal Anti-Kickback Statute.
According to court documents, Naviwala and his conspirators owned and operated several call centers (NAVIWALA Supply Companies) through which they obtained doctors’ orders for DME, mostly orthotic braces, for Medicare beneficiaries, regardless of medical necessity.
Naviwala and his conspirators obtained the DME orders using marketing call centers and telemedicine companies. They provided these orders in exchange for kickbacks from companies that provided mostly orthotic braces to Medicare beneficiaries.
According to the charging document, Naviwala worked with New Jersey residents Aaron Williamsky and Nadia Levit who owned, operated, and/or had a financial or controlling interest in several DME supply companies. He also worked with California residents Charles Burruss and Armani Adams who owned, operated, and/or had a financial or controlling interest in several DME supply companies. The DME companies were enrolled with Medicare as suppliers and therefore, were authorized to bill Medicare for the supplying of orthotic brace.
The investigation has revealed that starting at least as early as February 2017, and continuing through around April 2019, Naviwala conspired and agreed with the DME company owners and others to arrange for Naviwala to solicit and receive kickbacks and bribes
in exchange for providing them and their DME companies with completed doctors’ orders for DME for Medicare beneficiaries regardless of medical necessity.
For each completed doctor’s order that Naviwala and his co-conspirators sent to the DME companies and resulted in a Medicare payment, they would be paid a kickback of between approximately $125 and $450 per brace, depending upon the type of brace (the larger the brace, the larger the kickback). It was alleged they received approximately $46,811,452 in kickbacks and bribes.
In April 2019, Williamsky and Levit were indicted for, among other things healthcare fraud, violation of the Anti-Kickback Statute, and conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud and
violate the Anti-Kickback Statute. They have since pleaded guilty.
In September 2020, Adams and Burruss were charged with, among other things, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, healthcare fraud, and violate the Anti-Kickback Statute. They have since pleaded guilty.
Naviwala had his initial appearance before a U.S. Magistrate Judge in Ft. Lauderdale federal court and was released on $150,000 bond.
The Health Law Offices of Anthony C. Vitale represents healthcare professionals in state and federal court who are charged with fraudulent billing, kickbacks, Medicare and Medicaid fraud and false claims, among others. For more information, contact us at 305-358-4500 or email email@example.com