Thursday, February 28, 2013
A Derby optometrist has pleaded guilty in a wire fraud scheme devised to collect more than half a million dollars from eye exams that were never performed.
The U.S. Attorney's Office in Wichita says that 47-year-old Wade D. Abbey pleaded guilty to five counts of wire fraud after being indicted in March of 2012.
According to the indictment, Abbey and his wife Mindy were both optometrists for Vision Doctors of Optometry in Derby. Both were paid an hourly wage and fees for each full eye exam they conducted.
The indictment alleges that Abbey Inflated the number of eye exams that he and his wife performed and provided false information to an accountant who paid them based on that information. This went on from January to June 2010, and as a result, he was paid nearly $600,000.
Abbey is scheduled to be sentenced on May 16, and he faces a maximum of 20 years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000 on each count - in addition to restitution.
His wife is still awaiting trial.
Below is a statement from Vision Doctors.
Dr. Wade Abbey pleaded guilty on February 27, 2013 to five counts of wire fraud in a Federal criminal suit brought by the United States Attorney’s Office for executing a scheme to obtain money by providing false information regarding the number of patients he treated. In the plea Abbey admits to knowingly committing and being guilty the offenses.
Dr Wade Abbey and his wife Mindy, both optometrists, were employees of Vision Doctors, owned by Dr. Michael Gordon. Abbey defrauded the practice by intentionally falsely reporting the number of patients examined in order to inflate compensation due. As a result of this fraud, Abbey received nearly $600,000 in unearned compensation from the practice. The federal charges of wire fraud arise from the use of email, wire communications, for interstate commerce Abbey used in the reporting of the false information. In short, Abbey overcharged Vision Doctors by means of fraud for personal benefit.
Sentencing is set for May 16th and as part of the plea deal Abbey faces a maximum of 20 years in a federal prison, a fine up to $250,000 on each of the five counts, and restitution to the business in the amount of proceeds obtained from his fraudulent scheme.
Vision Doctors and Dr. Michael D. Gordon want to assure their patients that at no time were their confidential patient records compromised, nor was their treatment adversely impacted by Dr. Abbey’s fraud.
Charges against Dr. Mindy Abbey are pending.
The practice would like to thank the FBI and the US Attorney's office for their hard work to ensure justice is served.