Sunday, December 27, 2009

Woodhaven Chiropractor Faces Fraud Charges - Queens Chronicle

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A chiropractor with a practice in Woodhaven has been charged with insurance fraud and other charges after allegedly convincing a “patient” to fabricate injuries and then billing an insurance company more than $26,000 for medical treatments over three months, said Queens District Attorney Richard Brown. The defendant then allegedly gave a $1,000 kickback to the “patient,” who was actually an undercover investigator.

Anthony Latona, 50, of Long Island, who practices at 93-11 91st St. in Woodhaven, was charged with third-degree grand larceny, third-degree insurance fraud and first-degree falsifying business records. The defendant was released without bail and will return to court in February. If convicted, he faces up to seven years in prison.

According to the charges, an undercover investigator met Latona at his office on Sept. 16, 2008, at which time the defendant allegedly instructed the agent to fabricate back and knee injuries for the purpose of fraudulently obtaining insurance payments.

The undercover visited Latona’s office more than 40 times between September and December 2008 for the purported treatments, according to charges. During that time it is alleged that the defendant billed Empire Insurance for approximately $26,647 and was paid $9,557 by the insurance company. On Dec. 18, Latona reportedly gave the undercover investigator a kickback of $1,000 in cash.