Texas Men Indicted in $70M University Athletic Billing Scheme

February 1, 2024

Four individuals, including two physicians, have been indicted in the Eastern District of Texas charged with federal violations involving a university athletic billing scheme, announced U.S. Attorney Damien M. Diggs.

Mouzon Bass, III, also known as Muzzy Bass, 58, of Highland Park; Lance West Wilson, 54, of Allen; and Robert Brent Scott, 59, of La Quinta, CA; were indicted by a federal grand jury in January 2024 and charged with conspiring to commit wire fraud, conspiring to commit healthcare fraud, and conspiring to commit money laundering.

In a separate indictment returned in October 2023, Kyle Kelly Carter, 61, of Keller, was charged with conspiring to commit wire fraud. The defendants have all made initial appearances in federal court this month.

According to the indictments, from approximately 2014 through 2023, the defendants are alleged to have been involved in a university-centered athletic department billing scheme. Bass and Wilson used their company, Vivature, to submit false claims to private insurance carriers representing that physicians, like Scott and Carter, were providing medical services for injured student-athletes at universities across the country.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Eastern District of Texas alleges that in reality, these physicians did not see or treat these student-athletes, and in many instances, were physically hundreds of miles away from where the student-athletes were receiving treatment.

Rather, the services were actually performed by athletic trainers employed by the universities’ athletic departments—who, most times, were specifically excluded from insurance companies’ reimbursement policies. At the direction of Bass and Wilson, Vivature submitted thousands of false claims to the insurance companies, named Scott, Carter, and other physicians as the servicing providers, and used their NPI numbers on the claims’ paperwork.

In exchange for allowing the fraudulent use of their NPI and credentials, Vivature made regular payments to Scott, Carter, and other physicians.

A separate conspiracy involved only defendants Bass, Wilson, and Scott, who executed a scheme to fraudulently obtain Health resources and Services Administration (“HRSA”) government funds earmarked for COVID-19 testing provided to uninsured Americans.

The defendants partnered with international resorts hosting American travelers abroad, offering to manage the billing and claims process for COVID-19 testing provided to these American travelers. Then, the defendants submitted thousands of reimbursement claims to HRSA for such travelers, even though such travelers were privately insured and ineligible under the HRSA program.

In total, the defendants are alleged to have collectively obtained over $70 million from the two schemes. With these funds, they paid themselves millions of dollars; purchased real property including a multi-million dollar home, lakehouse, and international residence; and bought a multi-million dollar yacht.

This case is being investigated by the FBI and prosecuted by assistant U.S. attorneys in Plano.

Source: The U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Eastern District of Texas

Topics Texas Education Universities

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