The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center found itself at the center of a recent criminal investigation. The defendant is a man who allegedly committed fraud by stealing personal information from the medical center’s records. He reportedly had accomplices in his scheme. No information was provided as to the manner in which the man allegedly obtained the personal information.
Reportedly, the man is a native of Cuba. He was recently extradited back to Pennsylvania from Venezuela. The 32-year-old man is being held in jail until trial.
The defendant is charged in federal court with filing approximately 900 fraudulent tax returns. The total amount sought for refunds on all the returns combined is said to have exceeded $2 million. The Amazon website was also reportedly involved in the situation.
It seems that when someone uses online resources to file electronic tax returns, they are sometimes given the option to accept refunds as credits on Amazon.com. The man supposedly chose this option. He is accused of using the fraudulent credits to purchase electronic equipment that he later sold to others online. He and those accused of conspiring with him may also have kept some of the purchased items for themselves.
The man was slated to be arraigned by a federal judge in Pennsylvania. Fraud convictions often lead to harsh penalties that may include time in prison and substantial monetary judgments. For this and various other reasons, it is often beneficial to seek immediate assistance from an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as one becomes aware that he or she is subject in a federal investigation.
Source: lancasteronline.com, “Cuban man in fed court on hospital identity theft charges”, Joe Mandak, Aug. 10, 2016