Miami is an epicenter of fraud related to government-run healthcare programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. Each year, we see medical facility and pharmacy owners, doctors, and even hospital systems wrapped up in fraudulent billing or referral practices. Just this summer, there have been two major fraud-related crackdowns that have affected a wide network of assisted-living facilities here in Miami. These stories show the intricacies and details of how serious this issue is here in South Florida.
At the height of the "pill mill" crisis in Florida, we saw an increase in dependency and deaths related to opioid addiction, primarily addition to certain prescribed painkillers such as OxyContin, Vicodin, and morphine. Florida was ground zero for the consumption and black market of these drugs. Otherwise law-abiding citizens were caught up in the illegal sale and consumption of dangerous prescribed painkillers, constantly seeking the euphoric high associated with these drugs.
The Florida State Supreme Court is preparing to hear arguments about the state law which allows citizens to be prosecuted if they refuse a breathalyzer. Currently, Florida law allows police officers to arrest suspected drunk drivers if they refuse to take a breath test.
Ex-Mayor of North Miami, Lucie Tondreau, was convicted for her role in a mortgage fraud scheme conducted prior to her taking office. The charismatic public figure used her status, especially within the Haitian community of which she was a part of, to defraud citizens and banks to the tune of $11 million.