Fugitive wanted in historic Medicare fraud scam arrested at DFW after she fled country
Customs officials at DFW International Airport on Monday arrested a woman accused of being part of the biggest Medicare fraud scheme in history.
Lidia Antonio, 57, is one of 12 people from Dallas County suspected of involvement in a nationwide ear care scam that used false billings to steal $900 million from the federal government, U. S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said.
Lidia Antonio was booked into the Dallas County Jail on Monday.
Authorities say Antonio fled the country after she was indicted on charges of health care fraud and conspiracy to commit health care fraud.
Customs officials received information that Antonio would be arriving at DFW Airport on Monday. They notified FBI officials about her return.
Antonio was arrested upon arrival and turned over to the FBI. She was then booked into the Dallas County jail.
If convicted, she faces a maximum of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
In June, a Medicare Fraud Strike Force investigation resulted in criminal and civil charges against 301 people nationwide, including 61 doctors, nurses and other medical professionals.
They are accused of billing Medicare for bogus ear care procedures allegedly done on elderly nursing home patients, some of whom were unconscious.