- Associated Press - Thursday, January 11, 2018

SAN ANTONIO (AP) - A South Texas mayor and three other men have been indicted on federal charges that they conspired to fraudulently bill Medicare for more than $150 million in hospice and home health services.

Federal prosecutors announced Wednesday that Rio Bravo Mayor Francisco Pena and the others each are charged with conspiracy to commit health care fraud. Additional charges include one of obstructing a health care investigation filed against the 82-year-old Pena.

One of the men owned a collection of health care entities for which Pena, a licensed physician, served as the medical director.

Authorities say kickbacks and bribes were paid to medical directors, including Pena, for certifying that patients qualified for services when they actually did not.

An email message left for Pena on Thursday was not immediately returned.

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