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Chiropractor, Caught in FBI Undercover Sting,
Admits Scheme to Defraud Insurance Companies

December 2, 1998

A Greenbrook chiropractor today pleaded guilty to a scheme to defraud insurance companies by submitting claims for services not performed, U.S. Attorney Faith S. Hochberg announced.

Frank Marinaro, DC, who operated the Marinaro Chiropractic in Greenbrook, pleaded guilty to a one-count Information charging him with mail fraud. When he is sentenced March 5, 1999, by U.S. District Judge Mary L. Cooper, he faces a maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney John J. Carney. Marinaro also may have his chiropractic license suspended or revoked by the New Jersey State Board of Chiropractic Examiners and be fined by the New Jersey State Department of Insurance.

According to the Information, between 1994 and early 1995, Marinaro was a licensed chiropractor operating the Marinaro Chiropractic Center, where he treated patients involved in vehicular accidents and billed insurance companies for services that he never performed.

From in or about late 1994 to in or about early 1995, the FBI conducted an undercover operation into false billing practices by chiropractors, using cooperating witnesses to pose as patients injured in minor car accidents, when in fact there were never any injuries or accidents.

The cooperating witnesses, after establishing the appearance of a minor accident, sought treatment from Marinaro. On several dates when one of the FBI's cooperating witnesses was out of state or otherwise not receiving treatments, Marinaro caused bills to be submitted to insurance companies for services that were purportedly performed by him on these dates. Marinaro performed no such services, according to the Information.

Marinaro attempted to conceal his fraud by causing progress notes falsely stating that he had examined or treated the patient on a particular day to be submitted to insurance companies; he had not examined or treated the patient on that day, according to the Information.

Hochberg credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of William C. Megary, special agent in charge of the FBI's Newark office, with developing the case against Marinaro. The Government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Carney of the U.S. Attorney's Fraud and Public Protection Division in Newark.

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This article was posted on August 23, 1999.