NEW YORK – Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced the pleas and sentences of two individuals in unrelated investigations for causing claims to be filed with Medicaid that falsely represented that home health care services were provided to relatives.
Both Tina Gabel of Poughkeepsie and Enny Portillo of Highland Mills admitted to stealing from the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program (CDPAP), a home care program funded by Medicaid. CDPAP allows a physically disabled individual or their representative to assume full responsibility for their home care and recruit, hire, train, supervise and fire the personal assistants providing the care.
“We will hold accountable those who steal from the Medicaid program,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “I am pleased that we are able to return stolen funds back to Medicaid, which will be put directly back towards helping those in need.”
Enny Portillo, 59, admitted that she knowingly verified false timesheets submitted to Priority Home Care Services, Inc. (Priority), a fiscal intermediary for CDPAP, claiming that CDPAP services were provided in her Orange County home to her relative between February 2010 and November 2011 by the personal assistant, another relative, while the recipient was out of the country.
Tina Gabel, 59, admitted that she knowingly submitted false timesheets to AccentCare of New York, Inc., (AccentCare), a fiscal intermediary for CDPAP, which claimed that home-care services were provided to two of her relatives in Dutchess County between October 2011 and February 2015 when in fact the personal assistant, another relative, was not in Dutchess County. As the relatives’ representative, Tina Gabel was responsible to oversee CDPAP care for both relatives and to submit and verify the accuracy of their assistants’ timesheets submitted to AccentCare.
Tina Gabel pled guilty to Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, in Dutchess County Court on February 17, 2017, before the Honorable Edward McLoughlin. On April 21, 2017, Gabel paid $113,584 in restitution and was sentenced to five years of probation.
Enny Portillo pled guilty to Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, in Orange County Court on March 9, 2017, before the Honorable Craig Stephen Brown. Portillo, who has already paid $75,812 in restitution, was sentenced to five years of probation with 300 hours of community service.
The investigations were conducted by Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) Investigators Valerie Patrick and Jeffrey Pitts and Senior Audit Investigators Sandra Iskowitz and Melissa Stoebling with the assistance of Supervising Investigator Peter Markiewicz, Deputy Chief Investigator Kenneth Morgan, Principal Auditor Investigator Lora Pomponio, Principal Supervising Auditor Investigator Ann Winslow and Regional Chief Auditor John Regan.