– woman had fled to Guyana
The ex-wife of a New York transportation company owner currently in the custody of US authorities, has been detained also.
Kaieteur News was told that Shamiza Ally was detained at the JFK airport, New York, on Monday after leaving Guyana on a flight.
She had reportedly fled to Guyana months ago after hearing about a major investigation into her ex-husband’s company, Purple Heart Transportation, which is accused of defrauding Medicaid of a huge sum of money.
Her ex-husband, Sean Ally, and driver, Lissette Joza, are in custody.
Last month, Attorney General Letitia James announced the indictment and arrest of Ally, 44, as well as the indictment and arrest of a driver of the company, Joza, 31, for stealing over $1 million from the New York Medicaid programme.
They are accused of billing fake transportation services that were never provided.
Ally and Joza were arrested last month upon their arrival at JFK airport from Guyana.
Prosecutors from the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) outlined in court a scheme whereby the defendants, together using a number of different techniques, billed Medicaid for transportation services that never occurred. Medicaid reimburses transportation providers for transporting Medicaid patients to and from covered medical services.
Between late September 2017 and early May 2019, Purple Heart submitted claims to and collected from Medicaid over $29 million for allegedly providing transportation services to Medicaid patients in and around New York City.
However, prosecutors found and allege that over $19 million of that amount was for unmatched services — services for which there no corresponding bill for medical treatment for the patients who purportedly received the transportation services.
During their investigation, prosecutors uncovered a number of different techniques allegedly used by the defendants to submit claims to Medicaid for fake trips.
For example, prosecutors assert that the defendants allegedly paid numerous Medicaid patients a weekly kickback to use their Medicaid identification numbers so that they could then bill for non-existent transportation services in the name of these patients. New York State law strictly prohibits all medical providers, including transportation companies, from paying or offering to pay cash kickbacks to anyone in return for the referral of medical services ultimately paid for by Medicaid.
As a result, according to claims data analysed by prosecutors and outlined today in court, Purple Heart billed Medicaid for fake transportation services supposedly provided to dozens of patients daily by numerous drivers, who Purple Heart claimed repeatedly drove upwards of a thousand miles a day in and around New York City’s crowded highways and city streets.
Large sums of that money were then purportedly funneled through bank accounts to the individual defendants and to defendants Heart Holdings, Inc. and SA & SB Enterprises, LLC, both of which are shell companies controlled by several of the defendants. Additionally, portions of the money were then allegedly used by several defendants to make multiple real estate purchases, while further sums were transferred out of the United States.
Sean Ally and Shamiza Ally, along with Purple Heart, were charged in an indictment unsealed in Supreme Court, Queens County with the crime of Grand Larceny in the First Degree.
Each was also charged along with Lissette Joza and the two suspected shell companies, Heart Holdings, Inc. and SA & SB Enterprises, LLC, with one count of Money Laundering in the First Degree.
Sean Ally, Shamiza Ally, and Purple Heart were additionally charged with a second count of Money Laundering in the First Degree. Finally, Sean Ally was charged with two counts of Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree.
The charges filed in this case are accusations.
Sean Ally and Lissette Joza were arraigned on September 17 before the Honorable Barry Kron, Justice of the Supreme Court, Queens County.
Defendants were remanded and their cases were adjourned until tomorrow in Part K-5 Queens Supreme Court.
In conjunction with the criminal case, the Attorney General also obtained court orders to restrain the assets of the criminal defendants Sean Ally, Lissette Joza, Shamiza Ally, Purple Heart, SA & SB Enterprises, LLC, and Heart Holdings Corp., and filed a civil asset forfeiture and New York State False Claims Act action against the criminal defendants.
The asset forfeiture action and civil recovery action seeks to recover over $57 million in damages from the defendants for defrauding the State Medicaid programme.
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