Tallahassee, Florida (Press Release) --
Attorney General Bill McCollum and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) on September 9 announced the arrest of Natalie Ann Krasnow, 35, of Huntley, Illinois, on various felony charges including racketeering, aggravated white collar crime, and operating a scheme to defraud. Krasnow is currently being held on a $250,000 bond pending an initial appearance before a judge in McHenry County, Illinois. Krasnow was arrested by the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office in Illinois.
Krasnow was the former Chief Financial Officer of H.C. Healthcare, Inc., of Gainesville, Florida, which operated and owned Trinity Community Hospital in Jasper, Florida. Krasnow’s arrest yesterday by law enforcement officers with the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office, is a continuation of the joint investigation between the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, FDLE, and the State Attorney’s Office for the Third Judicial Circuit into activities at the now closed Trinity Community Hospital and its affiliated clinics in Hamilton, Suwannee, and Columbia counties.
Natalie A. Krasnow is the eighth person employed by or associated with HC Healthcare, Inc. who has been arrested since the inception of the investigation. In July, investigators with the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, FDLE, and the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office, arrested owner Robert A. Krasnow, 36, of Gainesville; Dr. Yong Am Park, 66, of Lake City; Robert T. Krasnow, 58, of Gainesville, the father of Robert A. Krasnow; hospital administrator Christina L. Ortega, 42, of Lake City; and licensed practical nurse Ashley Lane Butler, 37, of Live Oak. In addition, the former Medical Director at Trinity Hospital, Dr. Wayne A. Rahming, and former Trinity staff physician, Jorge Prieto, were arrested by Medicaid Fraud investigators in a separate scheme involving the unlicensed practice of medicine at a clinic in High Springs. Additional arrests may follow.
The investigation of Trinity Community Hospital established that over $660,000 in state grant funds dedicated to hospital improvements were received by the corporation, but little if any of these funds were used to make such improvements. CFO Natalie Krasnow was the corporation’s grants liaison officer with the Florida Department of Health and was instrumental in applying for and accounting for the proper disposition of these funds. The investigation disclosed that the bulk of these funds were used either to support the activities of the criminal enterprise or diverted to the personal use of Krasnow or her brother, hospital owner Robert A. Krasnow. Monies gained through these fraudulent activities were laundered through various bank accounts controlled by Robert A. Krasnow, and some of the diverted hospital grants funds were traced to a defunct car dealership managed by Natalie A. Krasnow.
Krasnow is charged with one count of criminal racketeering, one count of scheme to defraud and one count of aggravated white collar crime, all first-degree felonies. If convicted on all charges, Krasnow faces a maximum of 90 years imprisonment and $30,000 in fines. The case will be prosecuted by the State Attorney’s Office for the Third Judicial Circuit and specially designated attorneys from the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Internal Revenue Service, the Sheriffs of Hamilton, Columbia and Alachua counties, the Ocala Police Department and the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office in Illinois provided substantial assistance during the course of the investigation.
Florida Statutes provides that persons who report Medicaid fraud may be entitled to a reward for their information. Tips can be reported by contacting the Attorney General’s Fraud Hotline at 1-866-966-7226. Rewards will only be paid after a case has resulted in a fine, penalty or forfeiture of property.