Glendale resident Khachatour Hakobyan pleaded guilty Monday to conspiracy to commit money laundering and filing a false tax return as part of a Medicare scam at an Echo Park medical clinic.
Hakobyan, 47, helped launder $1.1 million in federal money from the Medicare program. A second Glendale resident, Aram Aramyan, 59, previously pleaded guilty on July 13 to the same charges.
The scam centered around a clinic on Sunset Boulevard in Echo Park operated by Glendale resident Karen Sarkissian. A physician’s assistant at the clinic allegedly prescribed or ordered tests and services that amounted to more than $11 million in fraudulent claims to Medicare.
According to their guilty pleas, Hakobyan and Aramyan deposited money from the Medicare payments into the bank accounts of five false companies that they owned and operated mainly to launder the money. They then used the money to pay themselves and their associates by writing checks from the false companies, according to officials.
The men entered their guilty pleas before U.S. District Judge Margaret Morrow and now face up to 23 years in federal prison. Hakobyan is scheduled to be sentenced by Morrow on November 16 and Aramyan on November 2.
The investigation was conducted by the FBI, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the IRS.