#AceWorldNews – BRITAIN (London) – October 23 – A British fraudster who pretended to be quadriplegic and sometimes comatose for two years to avoid prosecution has been convicted after police caught him on camera driving and strolling around supermarkets.
IN A STATEMENT IT WAS SAID: He might have got away with it if it hadn’t been for his supermarket loyalty card.
Alan Knight of Swansea, Wales, stole more than 40,000 pounds ($64,000) from the bank account of an elderly neighbor with Alzheimer’s disease, prosecutors said.
When police began investigating, the 47-year-old Knight claimed to be quadriplegic and so sick he sometimes fell into a coma.
He checked himself into a hospital to avoid court appearances, saying he was having seizures.
The South Wales Evening Post reported Wednesday that the suspect’s wife, Helen Knight, had written to the newspaper saying her husband had obtained a doctor’s letter certifying he was “quadriplegic and in a comatose condition, bed-bound at home” after a neck injury.
“We’ve been through absolute hell and we’re still going through hell,” she wrote, according to the newspaper.
Knight’s deceit was uncovered when police tracked the use of his supermarket card, and produced surveillance camera footage of him walking and driving.
Warned that the trial would go ahead whether he was present or not, Knight arrived at Swansea Crown Court Tuesday in a wheelchair and neck brace. Faced with the video evidence, he pleaded guilty to 19 counts of forgery, fraud and theft.
His wife has not been charged with any offense.
Judge Paul Thomas said Knight was “a very accomplished and determined actor … and the conditions he claims to be suffering from are simply nonexistent.”
Another step to “Police State America” here, links below and video, this isn’t good for you guys in the USA, having an Internet Licence, so you are logged on mobile phones, tablets. laptops, PC’s and any other device. Why do this?
A few years back, the White House had a brilliant idea: Why not create a single, secure online ID that Americans could use to verify their identity across multiple websites, starting with local government services. The New York Times described it at the time as a “driver’s license for the internet.”
Sound convenient? It is. Sound scary? It is.
237996-privacy-bill-of-rightsNext month, a pilot program of the “National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace” will begin in government agencies in two US states, to test out whether the pros of a federally verified cyber ID outweigh the cons.
The goal is to put to bed once and for all our current ineffective and tedious system of using passwords for online authentication, which itself was a cure for the even more ineffective and tedious process of walking into a brick-and-mortar building and presenting a human being with two forms of paper identification.
The rub is that online identity verification is heaps more convenient for citizens and cost-effective for government agencies, but it’s also fraught with insecurities; federal and state governments lose billions of dollars a year to fraud, and that trickles down to taxpayers.
Meanwhile, the technology for more secure next-gen authentication exists, developed by various tech firms in the public sector, but security groups have had a hell of a time implementing any of them on a broad scale. Enter the government, which proposed the national ID strategy to help standardize the process using a plan called the “identity ecosystem.”
The vision is to use a system that works similarly to how we conduct the most sensitive forms of online transactions, like applying for a mortgage. It will utilize two-step authentication, say, some combination of an encrypted chip in your phone, a biometric ID, and question about the name of your first cat.
But instead of going through a different combination of steps for each agency website, the same process and ID token would work across all government services: from food stamps and welfare to registering for a fishing license.
The original proposal was quick to point out that this isn’t a federally mandated national ID. But if successful, it could pave the way for an interoperable authentication protocol that works for any website, from your Facebook account to your health insurance company.
There’s no doubt secure online identification is a problem overdue for a solution, but creating a system that would work like an all-access token for the internet is a scary can of worms to open.
To start, there’s the privacy issue. Unsurprisingly, the Electronic Frontier Foundation immediately pointed out the red flags, arguing that the right to anonymous speech in the digital realm is protected under the First Amendment. It called the program “radical,” “concerning,” and pointed out that the plan “makes scant mention of the unprecedented threat such a scheme would pose to privacy and free speech online.”
And the keepers of the identity credentials wouldn’t be the government itself, but a third party organization. When the program was introduced in 2011, banks, technology companies or cellphone service providers were suggested for the role, so theoretically Google or Verizon could have access to a comprehensive profile of who you are that’s shared with every site you visit, as mandated by the government.
Post-NSA revelations, we have a good sense for the dystopian Big Brother society the EFF is worried about. As the organization told the Times, at the least “we would need new privacy laws or regulations to prohibit identity verifiers from selling user data or sharing it with law enforcement officials without a warrant.”
Then there’s the problem of putting all your security eggs in one vulnerable basket. If a hacker gets their hands on your cyber ID, they have the keys to everything.
For now, this is all just speculation. The program is just entering a test phase with select state government agencies only (there are currently plans to expand the trial out to 10 more organizations.)
But it’s not far-fetched to think we’re moving toward a standardized way to prove our identity in cyberspace the same way we do offline.
The White House argues cutting down on inefficiencies and fraud would bolster the information economy. In an era where we have cars that drive themselves and flying robots delivering beer, you have to wonder how much longer people are going to put up with standing in line at the DMV for four hours to hand a teller (with a taxpayer-paid salary) a copy of your birth certificate and piece of mail to prove you are you.
If an analysis of the pilot programs in Michigan and Pennsylvania find the centralized ID saves time and money and spares us the DMV line, privacy advocates are going to have a hell of a fight ahead of them.
#AceWorldNews – KABUL – April 13 – (Reuters) – Former opposition leader Abdullah Abdullah led on Sunday after the first official results from Afghanistan’s presidential election, but recorded incidents of serious fraud exceed figures for 2009, when over a million suspect votes were thrown out.
Initial results based on 10 percent of the vote from 26 out of 34 provinces showed Abdullah in the lead with 41.9 percent, the Independent Election Commission said, while Western-leaning academic Ashraf Ghani came second with 37.6 percent.
A third candidate, running with the backing of two of President Hamid Karzai’s brothers, trailed far behind with 9.8 percent.
“I want to make clear that the results could change in future, as we announce the results with additional percentages of the vote and this is not the final result,” said the chairman of the election commission, Ahmad Yousuf Nuristani.
Afghanistan’s allies praised the April 5 vote as a success because of the high turnout, estimated at 60 percent of 12 million eligible votes, and the failure of Taliban militants to stage high-profile attacks on the day.
Read More: http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/04/13/us-afghanistan-election-idUSBREA3C07T20140413
#AceHealthNews says when you are elderly and infirm ,would you expect your doctor, drug company and advisers, to give you a “Medicare Drug Plan” you do not really need. Well according to this recent article that is exactly what happened to this person, under this “Medicare Drug Fraud” read the story ……………………………………………. below: comment and share
Story of the Events:
At another time in her life, Denise Heap might have tossed aside the insurance forms listing the drugs prescribed to her mother.
The “explanation of benefits” forms came like clockwork and didn’t require any action on her part.
But Heap was worried about her mother, Joyce, who was in the end stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Her health had inexplicably declined in the Los Angeles-area nursing home where she’d been living. So in April, when a thick envelope arrived from her mother’s Medicare drug plan, Heap scrutinized it.
What she found was frightening: Her 77-year-old mother was receiving a raft of medications Heap had never seen before.
As Heap began Googling the drugs, she realized something was drastically wrong. Either her mother was being given expensive medications for conditions she didn’t have 2014 such as breast cancer, asthma, emphysema and high cholesterol 2014 or something sinister was going on: Someone was using her mother to steal drugs.
“I flipped,” Heap said. Medicare’s prescription program, known as Part D, paid for more than “$10,000 worth of meds” in just three months, she said.
She first called Medicare to report her suspicions, she said, then the insurance company that managed her mother’s Medicare drug plan. Neither, she said, seemed very concerned.
“I was like, No, No, No, You have to understand. I am trying to help you guys,'” she said.
Soon, Heap became convinced someone had stolen her mother’s identity while she was living at a nursing home run by an Armenian couple. The couple kept moving the location of the nursing home. And Heap believed they had over-sedated her mother with high doses of antipsychotics, inappropriately treating her blood pressure and allowing bed bugs to feast on her.
“I knew something crooked was going on,” said Heap, 59, who, with her mother, had co-founded a Holocaust education nonprofit in the 1990s to document stories of German resistance to Hitler.
Frustrated, Heap called Los Angeles County sheriff‘s Sgt. Steve Opferman, head of a task force specializing in prescription drug fraud. As soon as Heap began describing what had happened, Opferman said he knew her mother had been caught up in a fraud scheme involving Armenian organized crime.
Opferman and other investigators say criminals wager that patients and their families will not be like Heap. They bank on the fact that their victims 2014 Medicare beneficiaries 2014 will be too old or too sick to review insurance forms summarizing the medications and services billed in their names. And they count on the tendency of busy family members to give such forms a cursory glance, if that.
“Suffice it to say most people don’t pay attention, let alone know what they’re looking at,” Opferman said.
But Heap’s case, and others like it, shows the important role patients and their families can play in uncovering fraud within Part D. The program now covers 36 million seniors and disabled people and fills 1 in 4 prescriptions nationwide. Last year, it cost taxpayers $62 billion.
In an earlier report, ProPublica found that Medicare’s system for pursuing such fraud is so cumbersome and poorly run that schemes can quickly siphon away millions. Tips such as Heap’s can come into private insurers, which run Part D for Medicare, to contractors hired by Medicare to spot fraud, or to the U.S. Department of Health Human Services inspector general, which investigates health care fraud. But only a small percentage of cases funneled through this chain are prosecuted.
Reporters, using Medicare’s own data, were able to identify scores of doctors whose prescribing within the program followed known patterns of fraud: the cost of doctors’ prescribing jumped dramatically 2014 sometimes by millions of dollars 2014 from one year to the next and they chose brand-name drugs that scammers’ can easily resell.
Some doctors claimed that they 2014 like some of the patients involved 2014 were unwitting victims of identity theft. In other cases, federal investigators found, the doctors were paid for writing bogus or inappropriate prescriptions.
In a response to these findings, a Medicare official said more focus has been placed on fraud detection within Part D.
The drugs listed on Joyce Heap’s explanation of benefits forms are those most-desired in such fraud schemes. They included the asthma drugs Spiriva and Advair Diskus, for which her insurance plan paid nearly $270 a month each, the cholesterol drug Crestor, which cost nearly $170, and the antipsychotic Abilify, for which the plan paid about $920 for a 30-day supply.
Opferman said Heap’s call launched an investigation that uncovered a large Part D scheme allegedly connecting the owners of the nursing home to a North Hollywood pharmacy operation, including evidence that other residents’ identities were used. A September search of the pharmacy where Heap’s mother’s prescriptions were filled found evidence that drugs were being relabeled or repackaged for resale, he said.
The doctor who prescribed the drugs has denied prescribing the majority of them, Opferman said. The case is now part of an ongoing investigation by California’s Department of Justice and his group, he said.
Opferman said investigators might never have known of the scheme without Heap’s tip.
Joyce Heap didn’t live long after her daughter unearthed the problems.
She improved briefly after moving to a new nursing home, where a doctor reduced her psychiatric medications, Denise Heap said. But she died of a heart attack on April 21.
In the months following her mother’s death, Heap said, she sent letters alerting Medicare and her mother’s insurer to the possible fraud. In July she wrote, “Please note that 100% of the prescriptions charged in April 2013 2026 are FRAUDULENT.”
Heap said she is “outraged” Medicare didn’t follow-up and ask detailed questions about her allegations. In fact, it was either her insurer or Medicare 2014 she can’t recall which 2014 that recommended she call the local sheriff if she was worried.
“I would have thought immediately they would have gotten on it,” she said.
But Heap said she is mostly tormented that she didn’t know such fraud schemes existed 2014 and that elderly people like her mother could become prey.
“It’s a hard thing to live with,” she said, tearfully. “I feel like I failed.”
Courtesy of: Tracy Weber and Charles Ornstein ProPublica, Dec. 31, 2013, 10:20 a.m.
- “Let the Crime Spree Begin”: How Fraudsters Benefit from Medicare’s Drug Plan(alternet.org)
- Medicare Looks To Narrow Discrepancy On What It Spends In Different Parts Of U.S.(kaiserhealthnews.org)
- Real Solutions to Preventing Prescription Drug Abuse, Diversion at the Pharmacy Counter| Commentary(rollcall.com)
- How Fraud Flourishes Unchecked In Medicare’s Drug Plan(npr.org)
- Caught up in a Medicare drug fraud(armonews.wordpress.com)
When the FBI showed up at Mathew Martoma’s multimillion-dollar Florida mansion shortly before dawn on the morning of Nov. 8, 2011, the former SAC Capital hedge fund trader fainted on his front lawn. Federal agents had arrived to inform Martoma that U.S. prosecutors had evidence that he had violated federal securities laws. Two years later, Martoma is set to go on trial in the Southern District of New York for what the federal government calls the largest insider trading crime in U.S. history.
#AceWorldNews says Martoma, 39, is accused of orchestrating a $276 million financial scheme while working as a trader for SAC Capital, the multibillion-dollar hedge fund built by reclusive Wall Street billlionaire Steven A. Cohen. Martoma is charged with trading illegally on inside information he obtained from a doctor involved in a 2008 pharmaceutical trial for an Alzheimer’s drug that was being jointly developed by Elan Corp. and Wyeth. For more than a year, Martoma, who has pleaded not guilty, . #Fraud
Fraudsters often use the names of genuine people and organisations to make their deceptions seem more credible. Recent examples of scam correspondence have cited HM Treasury or Cabinet Office ministers or have claimed to be working on behalf of the HM Treasury.
HM Treasury and its agencies will never contact you asking for money or personal details.
More information about types of fraud and what to do if you think you may have been a victim of fraud is available on the Home Office pages.