Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Guilty Medicare Fraud Plea Former St. Simons Island CEO among 4 Defendants

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Guilty Medicare Fraud Plea Former St. Simons Island CEO among 4 Defendants

Article excerpt

BRUNSWICK -- The former chief executive officer of a St. Simons

Island psychiatric firm pleaded guilty yesterday to seven counts

in an 166-count federal Medicare and Medicaid fraud indictment.

Thomas E. Davidson is one of four defendants. He and his son

faced 156 of those counts. Davidson pleaded guilty to single

counts of conspiracy and money laundering and five counts of

mail and wire fraud for filing false claims and accepting

unearned payments from Medicare, Medicaid and the Civilian

Health and Medical Program of the Uniformed Services, an

insurance program for civilian employees of the Defense


The government asserts the company received $5.25 million in

payments between Jan. 1, 1989, and Dec. 31, 1995.

Davidson, 65, entered his plea before Senior U.S. District

Judge Anthony A. Alaimo, who will preside at the June 23 trial

of former officers in Shankman/Davidson Psychiatric Management


"I accept my responsibility," Davidson told Alaimo. "I profited

from it. All I can do is say I'm sorry."

Alaimo accepted the plea as the judgment of the court.

In exchange for Davidson's cooperation, the government will

move to dismiss the remaining 149 counts and make known to

Alaimo the degree of his cooperation to support a lighter


The other defendants are Davidson's partner, Andrew S.

Shankman, a 43-year old psychiatrist; Davidson's son, Michael E.

Davidson, 33, a company vice president; and Mary Jane Pedrick,

50, the firm's chief therapist. Thomas Davidson lives in Citrus

Springs, Fla., the other three still live on St. Simons Island.

The company's main office was on St. Simons and

Shankman/Davidson had 11 other offices in Georgia and Florida,

said FBI Special Agent Frank Bennett.

In detailing the company's violations, Bennett testified during

the hearing that Shankman had billed Medicare and Medicaid for

services rendered by therapists in up to 95 nursing homes from

Griffin to Fort Lauderdale, Fla. …

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