|Sim Hoffman, M.D. And Consorts Arrested In Orange County For Workers' Comp Fraud. Hoffman's Bail Expected To Reach Seven Figures.|
By Lonce LaMon - May 19, 2011
Sim Carlisle Hoffman, M.D., a radiologist in Buena Park, California, was arrested yesterday along with at least two other individuals: Thomas Heric and Louis Santillan. They are involved in what is believed to be a large criminal enterprise involving insurance and workers’ compensation fraud.
Hoffman, Heric, and Santillan are all listed as incarcerated in Orange County Jail pending their bail hearings. Beverly Mitchell is named as a defendant but is not listed as incarcerated at this time. This may just be a Sheriff’s Department error. Both Sim Hoffman, 58 years old, and Thomas Heric, 74 years old, are M.D. physicians. Louis Santillan is listed in the Orange County Sheriff’s Jail Records as a hearing rep.
All four defendants were arraigned this morning in Court Room C-5 in the Orange County Superior Court Building at 700 Civic Center Drive West in Santa Ana. They were set to have their bail hearings this morning, too; however the bail hearings were postponed until this afternoon. The results of those hearings are not yet known.
Bail for Sim Hoffman is expected to be in the seven figures.
This group of doctors and associates, with the ring leader being Sim Hoffman, have been bilking millions of dollars out of the insurance industry and the California workers’ compensation system for many years. They are all charged with somewhere between 1200 and 1500 counts of insurance fraud, health care fraud, and money laundering.
These charges fall under the categories of Aggravated White Collar Crime over $500K; Conspiring In, Aiding and Abetting The Unauthorized Practice Of Medicine; Fraudulent Claims For Health Benefits; Making False Or Fraudulent Claims; and Taking, Damaging/Destruction of Property.
Orange County Deputy District Attorney Shaddi Kamiabipour has been working on this case for several years. Zenith Insurance Company did a very good investigation, and the Orange County District Attorney’s office depended upon Zenith’s extraordinary work to make the arrests and validate the charges.
The two medical practices involved are Advanced Professional Imaging and Better Sleeping Medical Center, Inc. They are located at 6800 Lincoln Avenue in Buena Park. They performed diagnostic tests, and then interpreted and analyzed the diagnostics, wrote and signed the reports. The report signers were Beverly Mitchell, Thomas Heric, and Louis Santillan. Sim Hoffman was mostly involved in running the business.
Thomas Heric, M.D. also has worked for the infamous Munir Uwaydah, M.D. Heric, like Uwaydah, has also been on probation with the California Medical Board. He’s been under investigation also for false billings to Medicare.
I also found information on the Internet that Thomas Heric wrote a science fiction novel which was published in 2010 called The Healers, which is a tale of a not-so-distant future where medicine has been corporatized. The story takes place in the year 2021.
He is also citied to be an experienced screen writer and author of television episodes about medicine. He got a PhD from UC Berkeley and his M.D. degree from UCLA.