A Riverside County grand jury has indicted seven Southern California residents who have allegedly defrauded insurance companies for $98 million in workers’ compensation claims, reported The Press Enterprise.
The indictments are anticipated to lead to prosecution against the
defendants. A number of the defendants were charged back in 2014, but
have yet to face a preliminary hearing. With the indictment, however,
prosecutors can bypass the preliminary hearing and put the accused on
According to the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office,
chiropractor and Riverside native Peyman Heidary, 45, hatched a workers'
compensation fraud ring that involved various clinics in Riverside,
Orange and Los Angeles counties; this racket defrauded 18 insurers.
Prosecutors say that of the $98 million billed since 2009, at least $12.4 million was paid out.
“Heidary instructed his employees to purposely conduct batteries of
unnecessary tests including MRIs and sleep studies with the intent of
billing insurance companies an amount well beyond what was medically
necessary or indicted,” authorities claimed in a court document seeking
steeper bail and a hearing in an attempt to prevent the defendants to
post bail with allegedly stolen money.
The court documents further elaborated that the fraud ring would present
inflated bills to the insurers of the patient’s employers. If an
insurer refused to pay a bill, it can face a lien and fines from the
state. Desperate companies might have settled the illegal bills or liens
to avoid paying for fines.
The grand jury handed down two indictments. The first replaces the 2014,
and names Heidary and three other accomplices. They face a combined
total of 69 felony counts including conspiracy to commit insurance
fraud, making a false insurance claim, making a false statement for the
purpose of obtaining workers compensation benefits, money laundering,
practicing medicine without a license, and capping; plus one misdemeanor
count of unlicensed practice of law.
The second indictment charges three other accomplices who were medical
providers employed by Heidary with 38 felony counts, including
conspiracy to commit insurance fraud, making a false insurance claim,
making a false statement for the purpose of obtaining workers'
compensation benefits and capping.
Heidary faces up to 97 years and 4 months in state prison if he is
convicted as charged. His six accomplices each face up to 63 years and 4
months in state prison.