Pennsylvania Chiropractor Charged in Staged Bus Accident Claims

August 27, 2008

A former Bucks County, Pa., chiropractor has been accused of fraudulently billing two insurance companies for more than $27,000 for treatments to patients who claimed to have been injured in staged bus accidents.

Attorney General Tom Corbett identified the defendant as Dr. Eileen Means, 60, 94 Edwards Dr., Churchville, Bucks County. Means is the former owner and operator of Frankford Therapy in Philadelphia.

Corbett said that on August 31, 2003, a chartered bus, headed from Philadelphia to Atlantic City and operated by Starr Transit Co. was struck by a car at Berkley and Morris Streets, within minutes after it departed from the Germantown section of Philadelphia.

The accident resulted in only minor cosmetic damage to the bus, but Lancer Insurance Co. and Rutgers Insurance Co. received 14 claims from individuals claiming to have suffered “soft tissue” injuries.

As a result of an ongoing investigation, Corbett said agents learned that the Starr collision was staged and nine people were charged in connection with submitting fraudulent insurance claims.

Corbett said that on April 18, 2004, a Wertz Bus Co. charter, also headed from Philadelphia to Atlantic City, was struck by a car at Berkley and Morris Streets within minutes after it departed from Germantown. Although this bus also suffered only minor cosmetic damage, Lancer received 29 claims from persons claiming to have suffered “soft tissue” injuries.

According to charges filed in September 2007, the Wertz collision was also staged and there were actually only 21 people on the bus; 12 people with charged with submitting fraudulent insurance claims in connection with that collision.

Corbett said that investigating agents learned that one person reported that he knew in advance about the 2003 Starr Transit collision because he had been told about it by Means. Additionally, the 14 people who claimed to have been injured were allegedly treated by one of three chiropractors, including Means and a relative of hers.

As part of the ongoing investigation into the bus accidents, agents learned that 14 claimants from the 2004 Wertz collision allegedly sought treatment from either Means or her relative. Additionally, agents found that Scott Means sold tickets for the 2004 Atlantic City trip and assisted in chartering the bus; Scott Means was, at the time, the husband of Eileen Means.

Corbett said that Means allegedly submitted claims to Lancer and Rutgers for 53 to 60 days worth of treatments that she claimed to have provided to five patients from the two bus accidents. These bills totaled more than $27,000 and Lancer paid more than $13,000 and Rutgers paid nearly $7,000.

Agents said that none of the five patients were treated more than 20 days.

Means is charged with 15 counts of insurance fraud, five counts of criminal attempt theft by deception, five counts of theft by deception and one count of corrupt organizations.

Source: Pennsylvania Attorney General

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