A local Yonkers resident will spend more than seven years in prison for his role in a complex Medicaid fraud scam.
Julio Alvarado, 63, of Westchester County was sentenced to 95 months in jail for coordinating and managing a fraudulent transportation billing scheme that defrauded Medicaid of more than $8 million.
U.S. District Judge Kimba M. Wood ruled that Alvarado committed healthcare fraud by illegally charging Medicaid recipients for transportations services. As part of a complex operation, he oversaw a team of more than twelve participants who fraudulently billed Medicaid for services between August 2017 and February 2020.
According to the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, Alvarado led a team at KJ Transportation C Services Inc. to make false transportation claims on behalf of local Medicaid recipients. According to court filings from the Department of Justice, many of the claims made were for patients who never used or were aware of the transportation service.
“In some instances, the Medicaid recipient was deceased or out of the country when KJ claimed it was transporting that person to medical appointments. In other instances, the company used stolen identities, whereby the Medicaid recipient had never heard of KJ and had never taken any rides with the company.”
In other instances, Alvarado’s team would give Medicaid recipients “kickbacks” for allowing KJ Transportation C Services to use their Medicaid information to illegally charge for services that were never requested or provided.
Of the Alvarado’s sentence, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams chastised his predatory act towards Yonkers’ most vulnerable citizens.
“Julio Alvarado […] brazenly lined his own pockets with Medicaid funds meant to help the neediest New Yorkers. Today’s sentence makes clear that this type of criminal conduct will be prosecuted and punished to the full extent of the law.”
Alvarado pleaded guilty to one count of healthcare fraud. In addition to his 95-month prison term, the U.S. Attorney’s Office sentenced Alvarado to three years of supervised release and ordered to pay $8,507,115 in restitution and to forfeit $8,507,115.