Two Saratoga Physicians Found Guilty Of Five Counts Of Health Care Fraud

San Jose, California – Vilasini Ganesh and Gregory Belcher were convicted of providing false statements to health benefit programs by a federal jury yesterday, announced United States Attorney Brian Stretch and Special Agent in FBI Special Agent in Charge John F. Bennett.  The verdicts followed an eight-week jury trial before the Honorable Lucy H. Koh, U.S. District Court Judge.

The jury found Ganesh, 47, of Saratoga, guilty of five counts of health care fraud and five counts of making false statements relating to claims fraudulently submitted to health care benefit programs.  Belcher, 56, also of Saratoga, was found guilty of one count of making a false statement relating to a health care benefit program.  The defendants were acquitted of conspiracy and money laundering counts, and Belcher was also acquitted of four other health care fraud counts and one other count of making a false statement relating to a health care benefit program.

Evidence at trial showed that Ganesh submitted false and fraudulent claims to several health care benefit programs for services that she knew were not properly payable, by including claims for days when the patient had not been seen by the provider, and claims that the patients had been seen by another physician provider who was no longer affiliated with her practice.  Evidence at trial further demonstrated that Belcher had on at least one occasion submitted a false claim in connection with a billing matter related to his physical therapy practice.

On July 13, 2017, a federal grand jury indicted the defendants, charging them with one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349; one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1956(h); and multiple counts health care fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1347, and 2 and false statement relating to health care matters, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1035.

The defendants are currently out of custody, on a $350,000 bond as to Ganesh and a $250,000 bond as to Belcher. Judge Koh scheduled the defendants’ sentencing hearing for April 4, 2018.

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