GAMBLING

$300K Healthcare Fraud Led to Casino Benders for Rogue Physical Therapist

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Posted on: January 19, 2024, 05:38h. 

Last updated on: January 19, 2024, 05:38h.

A New York physical therapy entrepreneur with a penchant for high living and casino benders has been convicted of orchestrating a $300K health care scam to fund his extravagant lifestyle.

Chang Goo Yoon, physical therapist, casinos
The MGM Springfield, pictured above, was one of Yoon’s favorite haunts, often when he was supposed to be treating patients, according to his insurance claims. (Image: Boston Globe)

Chang Goo Yoon, 61, a Queens-based South Korean national, was found guilty of two counts of health care fraud by a federal grand jury Wednesday.

Yoon was the owner and operator of several physical therapy clinics in the Greater Boston area. Between 2014 and 2018, he billed for non-existent sessions with patients that coincided with days when he was provably traveling abroad or hitting up his casinos of choice: the Golden Nugget, Atlantic City, the MGM Springfield, Mass., and Twin River Casino in Lincoln, R.I.

‘Greed, Pure and Simple’

“This was about stealing and greed, pure and simple. Mr. Yoon exploited our healthcare system, and billed for fictitious treatments on dates that he was traveling abroad or holed up in a casino,” said Acting United States Attorney Joshua S. Levy in a statement.

This conduct was as brazen as it was illegal. Health care fraud is not a victimless crime. We all pay higher costs because of these types of fraudulent scams. Our office will continue to relentlessly pursue fraudsters and hold them accountable,” Levy added.

Additionally, Yoon claimed around $30K in physical therapy sessions for himself after three alleged automobile accidents. Most of those claims falsely listed one of his employees as the servicing physical therapist. The rest listed Yoon as both the patient and the servicing physical therapist.

Blackballed in Numerous States

In 2007, Yoon was barred from practicing physical therapy in Colorado after the state’s Division of Registrations determined he had committed health insurance fraud and “committed an act that does not meet generally accepted standards of physical therapy practice,” according to court documents.

He was later blacklisted in California, New York State, Washington D.C., and from the federal Medicare and Medicaid health care programs.

In Massachusetts, he frequently changed corporate names and simultaneously used different corporate names for the same clinic, which prosecutors argue was a bid to confuse insurance companies.

Arrested at Airport

Yoon was arrested on February 23, 2021 at JFK Airport as he attempted to board a flight to Seoul, South Korea.

Now he faces up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of up to $250K.  U.S. District Court Judge Indira Talwani scheduled sentencing for May 8, 2024.

“Chang Goo Yoon orchestrated a brazen scheme, abusing his position of trust as a health care provider to collect hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments for work he did not do. We thank the jury for its swift and prudent verdict,” said Jodi Cohen, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division.

“This conviction sends an unambiguous message that anyone who cheats our health care system will not get away with it,” Cohen added.

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