Ex-NFL players charged in $3.9M healthcare fraud

By AuntMinnie.com staff writers

December 17, 2019 -- The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has charged 10 former National Football League (NFL) players for allegedly claiming at least $3.9 million from a healthcare benefit program for expensive medical equipment -- including ultrasound scanners -- that was never purchased.

Following an investigation into the affair led by the FBI, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Kentucky filed two indictments against separate groups of ex-players for conspiracies related to the same scheme, according to the DOJ Office of Public Affairs.

The alleged fraud consisted of claiming tax-free reimbursements (of up to $350,000 per player) from the Gene Upshaw NFL Player Health Reimbursement Account Plan for out-of-pocket medical care expenses incurred by former NFL players and their family members. Collectively, the ex-players claimed roughly $3.9 million for ultrasound scanners, hyperbaric oxygen chambers, cryotherapy machines, and electromagnetic therapy devices that they never purchased.

Per the indictments, the defendants offered to submit these claims for other players in exchange for kickbacks and bribes as high as $10,000 per claim. The scheme involved fabrication of supporting documentation for the claims as well as impersonating other players.

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