Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison has announced racketeering and other charges against the owners and managers of MN Professional, a now-closed personal care assistance (PCA) agency in the Twin Cities. The agency is accused of defrauding Minnesota’s Medical Assistance program of $9.5 million by billing for home care that was either not provided or lacked required nursing supervision. This case is the largest uncovered by the state’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, resulting in charges against 18 individuals, including recruiters, an office manager, and PCAs employed by the agency.
The alleged fraud, which occurred from 2016 through 2021, involved care provided to 120 people without proper supervision by nurses or qualified medical professionals. Additionally, investigators discovered claims for approximately 25,000 hours of care that were never provided. Caregivers shown pictures of their supposed clients were unable to recognize them or identify their names.
The owners of MN Professional, Abdikarim Mohamed, and Ahmed Nur, are facing charges related to an “elaborate” check-cashing scheme used to conceal the fraudulent billing. The agency officials allegedly wrote checks in the names of PCAs, artificially inflating workers’ taxable wages, but then cashed the checks for themselves. The owners are also accused of listing their wives as board members and consultants, paying them hundreds of thousands of dollars. Furthermore, they are alleged to have falsified information to obtain COVID-19 relief loans.
The investigation involved the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Minnesota Commerce Fraud Bureau. Five of the 18 individuals charged in the case have already pleaded guilty. The attorney general’s Medicaid fraud unit has previously pursued four cases involving $2 million or more in fraudulent claims.