New American from Kenya Convicted in Medicaid Fraud Scheme

Editor:  I have a huge backlog of stories to post here at Frauds and Crooks and hope to do a news round-up post to catch up in the coming days.  A reader recently suggested that I should consider just sending out straight news without my editorial comment. I think I’ll try to do a little bit of both going forward and the news round-up will help with that by giving you more information with less words!

Hellen Kiago
Hellen Kiago convicted of ripping us off to the tune of $2.5 millon!

However, this story from Massachusetts caught my eye for a couple of reasons and is worth posting in greater detail.
It might not have been worth posting at all if it weren’t for the revelation that the convicted home health care provider was able to send $1.5 million of ill-gotten gains out of the country just before her arrest.
And, the story is important because home health care ‘businesses’ are rife with fraud and keep turning up in my searches for medicare and medicaid scam stories.

The headline (below) in the Worcester Telegram is deceptive—-former teacher!  She taught for three years in the early 2000s after coming to the US on a scholarship in 1998.
How was she even permitted to stay for decades?

Former Worcester teacher convicted of $2.5 million Medicaid fraud

WORCESTER – A jury has convicted a former Worcester teacher of stealing $2.5 million from the state’s Medicaid program, Attorney General Maura T. Healey announced Wednesday.
Hellen Kiago, 48, of Sturbridge, is set for sentencing May 24 after a conviction in Worcester Superior Court on charges related to allegations she fraudulently billed MassHealth through a home health agency she owned, Lifestream Healthcare Alliance.
According to Ms. Healey’s office, jurors after a 10-day trial ruled that Ms. Kiago defrauded MassHealth in several ways, including by billing it for services not authorized by doctors and directing employees to assist patients for longer time periods than was needed.
“Kiago also directed employees to falsify documents to hide wrongdoing including forging physician signatures during a MassHealth audit and creating false corrective orders,” the attorney general’s office said.
Ms. Kiago was convicted of four counts of filing false Medicaid claims and one count of larceny over $250 by false pretenses, the attorney general said.
At her arraignment, a prosecutor told a judge that Ms. Kiago transferred $1.5 million to Kenya – where the father of her child lived – within weeks of having her offices in Worcester and Dracut searched. She also quickly married a fellow Lifestream employee, Cheyne Johnson, and received her green card.
At the arraignment, defense attorney John George Malloy said Ms. Kiago came to the U.S. from Kenya on a scholarship in 1998. The recipient of two master’s degrees, she was a teacher in Worcester from 2001 to 2014, the lawyer said. [I doubt she has two master’s degrees, but who cares anyway. And teaching for three years is no reason to look favorably on the cheater’s character!—ed]

I’ll try to remember to get back to this story after she is sentenced later this month.  Or, if you see the news before I do, let me know!

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13 thoughts on “New American from Kenya Convicted in Medicaid Fraud Scheme

  1. Ann….did you see this headline on Pamela Geller?
    BLACKLISTED: WordPress Terminates Long Time Website “Creeping Sharia” In Accordance with Sharia Law.

  2. Sounds like she was an overstay on her student visa. If she was, the school district should never have hired her, but she might have used counterfeit ID. I would think a school district of that size would be careful about using the federal I-9 form.
    So if she did use fraudulent ID to gain employment that would be another felony.
    What indicates she had no visa was the recent marriage to the U.S. Citizen. It means she didn’t have permanent residency in the U.S., so she married prior to her conviction.
    I have been retired for quite some time, but I don’t think the marriage will stand up to prevent her deportation. I believe there is a two year period from date of marriage where they don’t get permanent residency, until the two years is up. It gives the USCIS and/or ICE time to determine if the marriage is real.

    1. Thanks for the info. Help me remember to look for her sentencing. The article says May 24th. Let’s see if there is any mention of deportation when she gets out. But, heck, she is all set up with $1.5 million parked in Kenya (if she can trust that ex of hers!).

      1. The prosecutor can ask the court to take in account the proceeds shipped overseas. The court can leverage her through sentencing to return the money.

  3. Yes Ann, the headline is completely misleading. The paper needs run with a “Medicare Scam” line, rather than the “former teacher” nonsense. I don’t think Americans grasp how bad the Medicare/Home Health Aide/Disability/Elder care gravy train is being abused. A sibling of mine worked in Home Health Care pre-Registered Nurse degree- she said more & more of them hire refugees/migrants as the positions are underpaid, thankless & hard to fill. Agencies may charge 30$ per hr per patient- yet pay aides 9$ per hour- with NO benefits, not even mileage reimbursement. A worker can literally end up paying to work there- after they add up fuel costs, time in driving, and taxes. There are no tax benefits working there, and you cannot deduct mileage on W2’s either with this job- something to keep in mind for those considering. Would you like a 27-year-old foreign male who has never touched a human female in his life caring for your 93-year-old Alzheimers’ patient? I don’t like these places hiring MEN in the first place, unless they are effeminate and health care is their lifelong career- but just some “guys who need a job”? This is outrageous.
    My relative also told me, that aides often perform work they are not allowed to under Medicare rules- but do it anyway, as they are desperate to keep their jobs: gardening, other domestic duties that are specifically outlined as not to be reimbursed by the taxpayer- who’s checking?? Nobody. These agencies that receive payment by government agencies are actually a form of slavery, of fascism- think of it like this: YOUR tax monies which you have no choice but TO pay, are being used to enrich profit-making corporations. How is this not slavery? You are forced to pay toward someone else’s profits? or else face jail if you try to evade paying? Mussolini coined this practice “corporatism” but we know it as Fascism, rightly called. Why our patriots aren’t marching on Washington to protest this is beyond me.

    1. Thanks for your comment. As I get deeper into this subject—scams involving Medicaid/Medicare/food stamps I am amazed at the extent of it and the almost total lack of interest in it by politicians and the taxpaying public. I think someone could run for elected office and win solely on a platform of exposing fraud on taxpayers. Of course once they got in they would find a massive wall blocking any reform they might like to initiate. Why?

    2. During the late 1980s I was a special agent for INS in the Washington D.C. office. We came across a bunch of these home care companies that hired illegal aliens, and gave them titles of RN, LPN etc.. They paid them practically nothing, and treated them horribly.
      We had so many cases we couldn’t keep up, so often we just arrested the workers, just to disrupt the companies.
      They need to set up a federal/state task force of agents from agencies that have oversight authority. DOL, HHS, HSI, ICE for federal.

      1. If I had any say in policy for the Trump Administration, I would put fraud-busting at the top of my list (or nearly at the top) to go after and then publicize successes at every opportunity leading up to 2020 (and beyond!).

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