The former co-owner and operator of a Charlotte-area company has admitted to defrauding Medicaid of at least $2 million, U.S. Attorney Jill Westmoreland Rose said.
Eric Bernard Mitchell, 43, of Charlotte, pleaded guilty in federal court on Tuesday to health care fraud and money laundering charges, Rose said.
Mitchell admitted covering personal expenses with some of the money Medicaid reimbursed him, including multiple car payments to a Mercedes dealer and various car repairs.
From 2007 to 2009, Mitchell co-owned and operated Angelic Community and Family Services L.P., which provided services to Medicaid beneficiaries with intellectual/developmental disabilities. The company later went defunct, court records show.
In 2009, Mitchell helped create another company, identified in court documents as “Company #1,” which provided the same type of services as Angelic. Mitchell operated significant portions of Company #1’s business and had exclusive control of the company’s bank accounts, records show.
Both Angelic and Company #1 were approved by Medicaid to provide services to beneficiaries and to receive reimbursement from the government program, prosecutors said.
According to court records, Mitchell created an unincorporated company, Mitchell Connor & Associates, which provided operational services to Company #1, including the submission of reimbursement claims to Medicaid.
Mitchell admitted in court to submitting through MCA fraudulent claims to Medicaid on behalf of Company #1, seeking reimbursement for services that were never provided.
Mitchell also admitted to submitting the fraudulent claims using the Medicaid beneficiary information of former Angelic clients who Mitchell knew were approved to receive such services.
Mitchell admitted to submitting at least $2.5 million in fraudulent claims using the beneficiaries’ stolen information and to receiving at least $2 million in payments from Medicaid.
Mitchell is free on bail pending a sentencing hearing that has not been scheduled.
The health care fraud charge and the money laundering charge each carry a maximum 10 years in prison.