ROCHESTER – Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced the arrest and guilty plea of Erica Viverette, a Rochester licensed practical nurse employed to provide private nursing services to a special needs young adult, for stealing nearly $5,000 from the Medicaid program by billing for numerous hours that she did not work.
“Exploiting the needs of disabled individuals for financial profit is inexcusable,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “My office will continue working vigorously to root out Medicaid fraud and hold those responsible for it accountable.”
The investigation, conducted by the New York State Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) and the Office of the Medicaid Fraud Inspector General (OMIG) revealed that Viverette, age 30, of Rochester, repeatedly billed the Medicaid program for work she never performed. Hired to provide nursing services to a four medically fragile persons, Viverette billed for numerous hours of care that she did not provide to those individuals, thereby accruing $4,910.57 in false billings.
The felony complaint, filed in Rochester City Court, charges Viverette with Grand Larceny in the Third Degree (D Felony), and seven counts of Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree (E Felony). The charges carry a maximum potential sentence of one and one third to seven years in state prison.
Viverette was arrested and arraigned before Rochester City Court Judge Melchor Castro, where she pled guilty to petit larceny. The matter is adjourned to February 8, 2016 for sentencing.
The case was investigated by Special Investigator Debra Clementi and Principal Auditor/ Investigator Thomas Clarke with assistance from MFCU Deputy Chief Investigator William Falk and OMIG Investigator Colleen Balkin. The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant Attorney General Timothy McFarland. Catherine Wagner is Director of the Rochester Regional MFCU Office and the Upstate Chief of Criminal Investigations. The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit is led by Director Amy Held and Assistant Deputy Attorney General Paul J. Mahoney. The Division of Criminal Justice is led by Executive Deputy Attorney General Kelly Donovan.