Press Release

For Immediate Release
Contact: Melissa Merz
312-814-3118
877-844-5461 (TTY)

mmerz@atg.state.il.us
June 9, 2006

MADIGAN ANNOUNCES ADDISON DOCTOR SENTENCED TO MORE THAN FOUR YEARS IN PRISON FOR MEDICAID FRAUD

Chicago – Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced that Judge Joseph Claps yesterday sentenced Dr. Babubhai Patel, 55, of Addison, to 52 months in the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC), $30,000 in restitution and a $20,000 fine. 

Patel pleaded guilty on March 24, 2006, to Vendor Fraud, a Class 1 felony punishable by four to 15 years in IDOC and Theft, a Class 2 felony, punishable by three to seven years.

Patel was indicted on December 17, 2002, and charged with billing the Illinois Dept of Healthcare and Family Services’ (previously the Illinois Department of Public Aid) Medical Assistance program for Medicaid patients that had not been examined or treated at his clinic, located at 6746 Stony Island, in Chicago.  Patel admitted that between January 1997 and December 1999 he had routinely “gang billed,” or billed IDHFS for all members of a family when only one had been present for treatment.  He also admitted that he often defrauded the agency by randomly pulling patient records and submitting bills when no person in the family had been treated.  He falsified medical records and wrote unnecessary prescriptions to conceal the crime.  

Because of the nature of the crime, the court noted that it was difficult to determine the true magnitude of Patel’s theft.  In sentencing Patel, Judge Claps stated that the sentence was intended to deter other doctors from engaging in fraudulent practices.

Madigan’s office conducted the investigation and prosecution of Patel in partnership with the State Police Medicaid Fraud Bureau and the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services.  Assistant Attorney General Patrick Murray and Senior Assistant Attorney General Frederick Crystal handled the case for Madigan’s Medicaid Fraud Bureau.

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