Beachwood mother, son convicted of Medicaid fraud

COLUMBUS, Ohio - A mother and son from Beachwood have been convicted of Medicaid fraud, according to the Ohio Attorney General's Office.

A judge sentenced Joyce Balin Fried to two years of community control with a suspended sentence of one year, on the felony charge.

Her son, Harold Fantl, was convicted and sentenced last month on a misdemeanor charge of falsification.

According to investigators with the Attorney General's Health Care Fraud Section, Fried and Fantl worked together to defraud the state of more than $80,000 by improperly charging Medicaid for hearing aid repairs and services.

"Medicaid fraud cases are a big concern, and this case is especially distressing," said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. 

This is Fried's second Medicaid-related conviction. In 2010, she was convicted of felony theft after billing Medicaid for hearing aid batteries that were not provided. She was sentenced to pay the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services $35,000 in restitution and her Medicaid agreement was revoked.

Less than a month after her conviction, investigators found that a new hearing aid company, Fantl Hearing, LLC, was opened using her son's Medicaid provider agreement. Investigators found that Fried was the actual owner. 

As part of a plea agreement, Fried and her son repaid Medicaid $83,731 and paid the Ohio Attorney General's Office $9,134 in investigative costs.

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