JEFFERSON COUNTY, Mo. — Two Jefferson County chiropractors along with eight others were indicted on fraud charges Friday afternoon.
According to a news release from the United States Attorney’s Office, Dr. Thomas Hobbs and Dr. Vivian Carbone-Hobbs and eight others conspired to “fraudulently obtain disability benefits from the Social Security Administration and disability insurance payments from providers of long-term and short term disability insurance.”
The eight other people indicted included two members of the doctors’ office staff, a former union representative of Anheuser-Busch In Bev, and five of the doctors’ patients.
According to the indictments, the defendants deliberately exaggerated the patients’ medical conditions in order to qualify for government and private insurance disability payments.
The chiropractors also forced patients to undergo an excessive amount of medical treatment beyond what was medically necessary in order to pad their medical records, a release said.
Starting in 2011, Anheuser Busch In-Bev employees sought out assistance from the two chiropractors in order to fraudulently obtain Social Security disability insurance benefit payments. The AB In-Bev employees obtained a long-term disability insurance payment of $100,000 among other long-term and short-term disability benefits.
Conspiracy to defraud carries a maximum prison sentence of five years for each count and a fine of $250,000 or both.
The health care fraud violations and the theft of government fund violations carry a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment for each count and a fine of $250,000 or both. Restitution to the victims is also mandatory, a press release from the United State’s Attorney’s Office said.