One of seven people charged in what authorities say was a local ambulance company's scheme involving more than $1.5 million in fraudulent Medicare claims has been sentenced to 24 months in prison.
Valeriy Davydchik, 59, of Philadelphia, was an ambulance driver at Penn Choice Ambulance Inc., which is located in Camp Hill and Huntingdon Valley. U.S. District Court Judge Juan R. Sanchez ordered Davydchik to pay restitution to Medicare, imposed a three-year term of supervised release after imprisonment, ordered the forfeiture of any assets traceable to the offense and, in lieu of assets, a money judgment against the defendant of $870,310.14.
According to investigators, the group conspired to defraud Medicare by recruiting patients who could walk and travel safely by means other than ambulance and therefore were not eligible for ambulance transportation under Medicare requirements. Investigators say the seven, and others acting on their behalf, falsified reports to make it appear that the patients needed to be transported by ambulance when they knew the patients could be transported safely by other means and that many of them walked to the ambulance for transport.
Investigators also said the defendants themselves, or through others, paid illegal kickbacks to the patients as part of the scheme.
The other defendants are Penn Choice Ambulance Inc. owner Anna Mudrova, 40, and operators Yury Gerasyuk, Mikhail Vasserman, Irina Vasserman, Aleksandr Vasserman and Khusen Akhmedov. All have pleaded guilty and await sentencing before Sánchez.