United States v. Ricard, No. 18-30047 (5th Cir. 2019)Annotate this Case
The Fifth Circuit affirmed defendant's conviction for one count of conspiracy to pay and receive kickbacks for referring Medicare patients to a particular health care provider, three counts of receiving such kickbacks for such referrals, three counts of identity theft, and one count of making false statements to a federal agent. The court held that the evidence was sufficient to support defendant's convictions, rejected defendant's evidentiary challenge, and rejected defendant's challenge to the inclusion of a deliberate ignorance jury instruction.
However, the court vacated defendant's sentence, holding that the district court erred by not deducting Progressive's direct costs—the value of the treatment Progressive provided—in calculating the improper benefit conferred under USSG 2B4.1. The court also held that the district court erred by ordering defendant to pay restitution in any amount where the district court failed to offset the amount Medicare would have reimbursed Progressive for the services rendered had there been no illegal kickback scheme. Accordingly, the court remanded for resentencing and dismissal of the restitution order.