DJ FILE - Courts

PEORIA — Joseph Mayotte, the former owner of Bradley Chiropractic Clinic, was sentenced to 33 months in federal prison for insurance billing fraud and failure to pay federal taxes on Thursday in U.S. District Court.

The 72-year-old Mayotte must repay $410,000 to Blue Cross and Blue Shield Insurance and $93,526 to the IRS.

Mayotte, of Kankakee, was ordered to report to the federal Bureau of Prisons on Dec. 17, to begin serving his sentence. Mayotte pleaded guilty Feb. 11, as jury selection was beginning for trial.

According to a release, Mayotte admitted that from January 2007 to October 2015, he submitted false billing claims to defraud Blue Cross Blue Shield.

The false claims were typically made on behalf of patients for whom the clinic had not provided any services or were in excess of the actual services provided.

As a result, Blue Cross Blue Shield paid the clinic money to which it was not entitled, which Mayotte then used for his own benefit.

In addition, Mayotte admitted that he failed to file federal income tax returns for tax years 2011 through 2014.

In addition to Mayotte, the clinic’s former office manager, Constance “Connie” Leadingham, previously pleaded guilty to bank fraud and filing false income tax returns, and was sentenced on March 1.

Leadingham, of Watseka, was sentenced to 12 months in federal prison for her role in the fraud scheme and ordered to pay $449,071 in restitution.

As the clinic’s office manager, Leadingham admitted she submitted false billing claims, then wrote checks payable to herself from the clinic’s checking account in addition to her salary.

Leadingham also admitted that in addition to the fraud scheme, she filed false income tax returns for tax years 2011, 2012 and 2013.

Federal authorities raided the office, 956 W. Broadway St., on Oct. 8, 2015.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Office of Inspector General; Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations and the Federal Bureau of Investigation conducted the investigation.

Supervisory Assistant U.S. Attorney Eugene L. Miller and Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy A. Bass represented the government in the case prosecutions.

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