Authorities on lookout for Medicare fraud suspect

Vivian Adiza Yusuf is accused of illegally obtaining confidential health care information from elderly patients and using it to submit millions of dollars worth of fradulent claims to Medicare.

March 30, 2011 12:02:18 PM PDT
Detectives are searching for a woman accused of stealing personal information from the elderly and using it to submit millions of dollars worth of fraudulent claims to Medicare.

A grand jury on March 2 indicted 40-year-old Vivian Adiza Yusuf, also known as Vivan Adiza Amenaghawon, on charges of conspiracy to commit health care fraud, health care fraud, and aggravated identity theft, according to a Crime Stoppers statement.

Detectives say the Nigerian native and other co-conspirators illegally obtained confidential health information, including names, dates of birth and Medicare numbers, from elderly residents of Texas and Louisiana by pretending to market power wheelchairs, accessories and kits containing orthotic products. Yusuf and her partners then would allegedly submit their information to Medicare and claim they had purchased the products. In some cases, the suspects would allegedly forge doctors' signatures and even submit fraudulent claims for Medicare beneficiaries who are deceased.

Authorities estimate that the suspects submitted about 790 false claims totaling $3.4 million and netted more than $1.6 million from the alleged scheme.

The last known address of Yusuf, who is a native of Nigeria, is near the 13000 block of Rosewood in Houston. She has black hair, brown eyes, 5 feet 6 inches tall and weighs around 200 pounds. She is known to wear loose, baggy style clothing and is likely traveling with a male toddler.

Anyone with information regarding her whereabouts is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.

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