Appeal Court Rejects Killer’s Case


CANADA: A former Mississauga chiropractor found guilty of bludgeoning his wife to death with an axe has failed in his bid to have the conviction and life sentence overturned.

The Ontario Court of Appeal announced on April 5 that it struck down an appeal by Kirk Klymchuk, 50, who argued that the jury’s verdict in spring 2008 was unreasonable and that the trial judge failed to properly instruct the jury before deliberations.

The panel of appeal judges dismissed those arguments.

“The appellant received a fair trial. He was ably represented by experienced counsel and the learned trial judge ensured that the jury only heard evidence that was properly admissible,” the judges said in their ruling. “The charge to the jury was a model of fairness and clarity and the trial judge presented the appellant’s case fully and in its most favourable light.”gavel2

In May 2008, a jury found Klymchuk guilty of second-degree murder in the slaying of his wife, Maria, 36.

Dawson issued an automatic life sentence and later ruled Klymchuk couldn’t apply for parole for at least 13 years.

Klymchuk went to trial for first-degree murder in the April 12, 1998, slaying of his wife. Jurors returned a guilty verdict on second-degree murder.

In reaching their verdict after five days of deliberations, jurors weren’t informed that it was the third time Klymchuk had stood trial for killing his wife, a Toronto schoolteacher.

He was initially convicted in 2000 in Orangeville, but the verdict was overturned on appeal after he had served five years of a life sentence in a federal penitentiary.

His second trial—in 2006 in Brampton—ended with a hung jury.

Prosecutor Eric Taylor told jurors that Klymchuk meticulously staged the crime scene to make it look like his wife was brutally slain after confronting intruders during a break-in at the couple’s Caledon home.

Klymchuk was a chiropractor in Mississauga before moving his practice to Brampton, where he was working when he was arrested nearly 13 years ago.

[email protected]

Pennsylvania Chiropractor Sentenced for Healthcare Fraud Scheme


PHILADELPHIA—Dr. Neil H Hollander, 55, of Huntingdon Valley, PA, was sentenced February 18th  to one year and one day in prison for health care fraud, mail fraud, and making false statements in a health care matter, announced United States Attorney Zane David Memeger. Hollander, who maintained a chiropractic office at the Hollander Chiropractic Center in Philadelphia, billed Independence Blue Cross (“IBC”) approximately $ 914,503.19 for chiropractic treatments that he had not actually rendered to the insured patients. IBC paid approximately $304,096.28.fraud

In 2005, when IBC requested patient files from Hollander, Hollander created false documents to submit to IBC in an effort to justify the fraudulent billings that had been submitted. Hollander pleaded guilty to the charges on June 10, 2010. In addition to the prison term, United States District Court Judge Petrese Tucker ordered Hollander to pay restitution in the amount of $304,096.28 and to serve three years’ supervised release upon completion of the prison term. Hollander was ordered to begin serving his sentence on April 28, 2011.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Postal Inspection Service. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Emily McKillip.

Source: FBI

Preclinical Studies Published in Neurosurgery and the Journal of Neurotrauma Evaluate Effect of DHA Supplementation on Prevention and Treatment of Traumatic Brain Injury

martekdhaStudies Utilize Martek Biosciences’ Algal DHA Omega-3

COLUMBIA, Md. — February 21, 2011 – Preclinical studies recently publishedin the February 2011 issue of Neurosurgery and the September 2010 issue of the Journal of Neurotrauma indicate that algal DHA intake either prior to traumatic brain injury (TBI) or post-TBI helps to protect the brain by reducing the number of injured brain fibers following trauma.  The studies, led by neurosurgeon Dr. Julian Bailes, used Martek’s algal DHA and were conducted at the Department of Neurosurgery at the West Virginia University School of Medicine.

These studies were funded by grants from Martek Biosciences for which Dr. Bailes serves as a consultant. Journal of Neurotrauma study co-author, Kevin Hadley, PhD, is a senior clinical research scientist at Martek Biosciences.

Neurosurgery, February 2011

In this study, adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to a TBI after receiving administration of algal DHA in doses of 4, 12 and 40 mg per kg of body weight for 30 days prior to the trauma.  Results revealed that DHA supplementation prior to TBI significantly reduced the number of amyloid precursor protein (APP) positive axons to levels similar to what have been found in uninjured animals.  APP is a marker of axonal injury. The group receiving the highest dosage of DHA also demonstrated significant improvement in the outcome measures compared with the control group, including measures of injured axon counts, inflammatory markers, indicators of pre-programmed cellular death, and memory testing. These findings suggest that DHA supplementation prior to TBI reduces the impact of the injury, for the first time suggesting that a prophylactic supplement may protect the brain or reduce the potential for subsequent TBI.

Journal of Neurotrauma, September 2010

This study subjected adult male Sprague-Dawley rats to the same injury model used in the Neurosurgery paper.  After the injury they received either 10 mg or 40 mg per kg of body weight of algal DHA for 30 days.  Results revealed that DHA supplementation after TBI significantly reduced the number of APP-positive axons to levels similar to what have been found in uninjured animals.  In addition to a reduction in injured axons as measured by APP counts, caspase-3 els – a marker of brain cell death – were reduced with DHA administration.

“We’ve known for a long time that DHA is a building block of the brain and important to optimal brain development and health throughout life, and now this preclinical data suggests that further clinical research be undertaken to determine the potential benefits of DHA on head injury,” commented Dr. Julian Bailes, a founding member of the Brain Injury Research Institute, professor, and a recognized leader in the field of neurosurgery and on consequences of brain injury on cognitive function.  “The results of these studies are extremely timely as they come at a point when traumatic brain injuries, including concussions, are growing more prevalent.”

Sections of this release contain forward-looking statements. These statements are based upon numerous assumptions which Martek cannot control and involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ. These statements should be understood in light of the risk factors set forth in the company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, but not limited to, the company’s Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended October 31, 2010 and other filed reports on Form 10-K, Form 10-K/A, Form 10-Q and Form 8-K.


For more information contact Andrea Martin at Martek Biosciences.  Call 240-512-2639, or e-mail  [email protected].

United Health Group Sued by Pomerantz for Improper Recoupment Practices


NEW YORK, NY:  Pomerantz Haudek Grossman & Gross LLP, one of the country’s preeminent class action firms and a leader in combating the abuses of the health insurance industry, filed a class action lawsuit against UnitedHealth Group and Health Net of the Northeast, Inc., on behalf of a putative nationwide class of health care providers, as well as the Ohio State Chiropractic Association. United’s acquisition of Health Net of the Northeast’s health insurance business closed in December 2009, adding to United’s status as the nation’s largest private health plan by revenue. The suit challenges the Defendants’ abusive practices in using post-payment audits and reviews, and improper repayment demands, to pressure providers to repay substantial sums that had previously been paid as health insurance benefits.

gavelandscalesofjusticeThe action alleges that the post-payment audit and review process, as applied by the Defendants, violates the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”), in that its repayment demands are retroactive determinations that particular services are not covered under the terms of the United and Health Net health care plans, but without proper appeal or other protections otherwise available under ERISA for both self-funded and fully insured health care plans offered through private employers.

“ERISA establishes the procedures that insurance companies must follow when making benefit determinations—whether prior to payment or retroactively,” says Plaintiffs’ counsel, D. Brian Hufford of Pomerantz. “The Defendants here, as is true for many insurance companies, are violating their ERISA obligations in order to recover funds that simply do not belong to them.”

In the complaint, Plaintiffs allege that, as a means to maximize their profits, United and Health Net used their post-payment audit and review process to make retroactive adverse benefit determinations, whereby they demand that providers repay funds they had previously received for providing services to United and Health Net subscribers. Moreover, Defendants frequently withhold new benefit payments for unrelated services to apply toward the alleged overpayments, even where there has been no valid appeal process or validation that any sums are, in fact, owed by the providers, a practice called “offsetting.”  Plaintiffs’ Co-Counsel, Vincent Buttaci of Buttaci & Leardi, LLC, states that “providers are placed in an untenable position as a result of false fraud allegations made against them in an effort to coerce and intimidate, and through our lawsuit they are now fighting back.”

Pomerantz and Buttaci & Leardi have pending actions against a number of Blue Cross and Blue Shield entities, as well as Aetna, Inc., asserting similar claims. Robert J. Axelrod of Pomerantz notes that “the current defendants represent some of the largest insurers in the country, but certainly are not the only ones engaged in this improper conduct against all type of providers, including both individuals and health care facilities and hospitals.”

Counsel for plaintiffs are continuing to investigate these claims, and other related claims that may be added to the litigation.

[email protected]

Fairfield Chiropractor Indicted


OHIO:  A Fairfield chiropractor has been indicted on charges of workers’ compensation fraud and theft.

Bruce Holaday, owner of Back and Spine Center on Mack Road, was indicted by a Franklin County grand jury after an investigation by the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation Special Investigations Department.

BWC SID initiated an investigation after receiving an allegation that Holaday was concealing from BWC his direct involvement in the treatment of injured workers.  Holaday was unlawfully using the names and provider identification numbers of the chiropractors with whom he practiced after being permanently decertified as a BWC health care provider, prohibiting him from seeking and receiving reimbursement from BWC.

workmanscompensationHoladay also pleaded guilty to a charge of workers’ compensation fraud in December of 1996, when he was proprietor of Advantage Care Chiropractic, Inc. He billed BWC for $13,006 in services that he did not provide.

Workers’ compensation fraud threatens the integrity and solvency of the State Insurance Fund,” said BWC Administrator Steve Buehrer. “Our investigative team works aggressively to root out and prosecute health care providers, as well as employers and injured workers, who are attempting to cheat Ohio’s workers’ compensation system.”

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine’s office assisted in the investigation.

“This case demonstrates the commitment of the Attorney General’s office to vigorously prosecute anyone who tries to circumvent the rules and cheat Ohio workers through abuse of the workers compensation program,” said DeWine.

Holaday also pleaded guilty to a charge of workers’ compensation fraud in December of 1996, when he was proprietor of Advantage Care Chiropractic, Inc. He billed BWC for $13,006 in services that he did not provide.


Pennsylvania Chiropractor Convicted of Fraud


PENNSYLVANIA:  Dr. Joseph J. Lerner, 50, of Chalfont, PA, was sentenced in early January to 36 months in prison for a $3 million scheme to defraud Independence Blue Cross, Aetna Health Management, Highmark Blue Shield and five other health insurance companies.

According to charges brought by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Lerner, a chiropractor who owned a gym and health club in Horsham, PA, fraudulently billed the insurance companies for chiropractic treatments that Lerner neither provided nor supervised between 2007 and March 2010.

fraudLerner hired masseuses and personal trainers to work at Horsham Fitness, to provide massages and personal training to gym members whose health insurance Lerner would bill fraudulently for chiropractic services that Lerner never provided, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Lerner suggested to people seeking to join the gym that they could obtain massages and personal training for the very low price of only a co-payment, usually $10, by having their health insurance pay for those massages and personal training sessions.

The U.S. Attorney alleged that Lerner caused the submission of fraudulent medical bills to the eight insurance companies totaling about $3 million, resulting in payments from the insurers of more than $1.9 million.

In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Cynthia M. Rufe ordered Lerner to pay restitution in the amount of $1,932,910.95 to the insurance companies. The government seized cash and bank accounts from Lerner totaling $432,834.12.

Philadelphia Business Journal

6 Face Insurance Fraud Charges


FLORIDA:  Six people were charged either with faking traffic accidents or filing claims for medical treatment that never took place.

Five people in Miami-Dade and one in Naples were arrested recently with faking car accidents, recruiting people to stage wrecks or filing false claims with insurance companies using drivers’ personal injury protection insurance policies.

Combined, the scammers billed insurance companies for $170,000 worth of medical treatment that was never performed, according to the Florida Division of Insurance Fraud. If convicted, they face imprisonment on charges including grand theft, filing false insurance claims, staging accidents and patient brokering. The six arrested join more than 400 others charged in the past two years with fraud related to PIP insurance.fraud

Fraud related to PIP costs the average Florida family as much $400 a year, according to Florida’s chief financial officer. Four Florida cities—Tampa, Miami, Orlando and Hialeah—are now listed among the top 10 in the nation for PIP fraud.

“PIP fraud perpetrators may find the crime easy to commit, but I am putting the word out that they will do hard time if convicted,” CFO Jeff Atwater said in a statement.

Personal injury protection insurance, which all Florida drivers must buy, pays for up to $10,000 worth of medical care and lost wages following a car accident, regardless of who is at fault for the crash.

[email protected]

Golden Achievement of Chiropractic Education Award bestowed on Chiropractic Dignitary


Roanoke, VA- January 24, 2011— Foot Levelers presented Dr. Gerard W. Clum, the first president of Life Chiropractic College West, with the Golden Achievement of Chiropractic Education Award. Approximately 20 years ago, Foot Levelers created golden achievement awards for a handful of individuals that have made significant impacts to better the chiropractic profession.


“This achievement award is a once-in-a-lifetime recognition of exceptional contribution and dedication to different aspects of the chiropractic profession ,” said Kent S. Greenawalt, President and CEO of Foot Levelers. “Chiropractic is part of Dr. Clum’s DNA–live, eat, breath, sleep, do, achieve for this fine profession.”

Dr. Clum’s 30 years serving Life Chiropractic College has placed him among the most senior of chiropractic college administrators in the world. His noteworthy service has consisted of:


  • President of the World Federation of Chiropractic

  • President of the Association of Chiropractic Colleges

  • Board member of the International Chiropractors Association for 20 years

  • Executive committee member of the Foundation of Chiropractic Progress

Dr. Clum’s recent retirement as president of the College allows him to pursue other areas of interest and need in the chiropractic field. He included in his acceptance of the award that he is “retiring from a position, not the profession.”

The same company that produces the Oscars® made the award. It stands about 18 inches high and plated with 24K gold. “The award is 24K plated—and although it is very valuable, it is incomparable to the priceless achievements of a chiropractic champion such as Dr. Clum,” said Greenawalt.

Probation for Chiropractor in Insurance Fraud


PENNSYLVANIA:  A Bucks County chiropractor who participated in a scheme to bilk Independence Blue Cross of almost $2 million was sentenced recently to three years’ probation and ordered to perform 450 hours of community service.

U.S. District Judge Gene E.K. Pratter gave Dr. Raymond W. Brozek, 57, of Telford, a big break after Assistant U.S. Attorney Anita Eve filed a motion for leniency based on “substantial” assistance from Brozek that led to charges against others.

Two other defendants in the case—Michael Karp and Mark Levin—were sentenced to prison terms of six months and a year and a day, respectively, in September and November.

probationofficerBrozek, who is no longer practicing and likely faces suspension of his license, is working as a chauffeur. He admitted lately that he had made a “terrible, terrible mistake.”

Authorities said Levin, 65, and Karp, 39, who is Levin’s son-in-law, owned Hatfield Athletic Club and Rehab One, a chiropractic office at the club.

The men hired Brozek to work there from 2004 to 2006. Levin demanded that Hatfield workers be seen by Brozek as often as possible so he could bill IBC, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors said Brozek followed his superiors’ directions and caused fraudulent bills to be submitted for treatments either he didn’t perform or that weren’t medically necessary.

Authorities said Brozek also prepared bogus bills that were used to submit claims to IBC that represented services provided to Hatfield workers, who were encouraged and forced to sign Rehab One’s patient log regardless of whether they were treated.

At the direction of Karp and Levin, Brozek created office notes and other documents that included fictitious procedure codes and false depictions of symptoms and clinical findings, which were used to prepare bills submitted to IBC.

Authorities said the defendants submitted almost $2 billion worth of medical bills to IBC, resulting in payments from IBC of $399,882.

The three defendants must make a combined restitution of $399,822 to IBC.

Philadelphia Daily News

Chiropractor Attacked for Advertising Claims Associated with DRX-9000 in California


CALIFORNIA: A Danville chiropractor has been pushing a device via his website to thousands of chiropractors with false claims that it’s approved by the FDA and endorsed by NASA, the Alameda County District Attorney’s office said in a news release.

Dr. Benjamin Altadonna made or caused to be made a traction device which he “sold or leased for between $90,000 and $115,000,” according to the complaint. He advertised the device with deceptive claims as the “DRX9000 New Cash Patient Marketing System” or the “DRX9000 Spinal Decompression Lead Generation and Conversion Marketing System,” the State said.

“Many different counties joined in on the lawsuit and decided to file it [in Alameda County,” said D.A. Teresa Drenick. Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa, Orange, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Shasta, Solano, and Sonoma counties are all part of the civil complaint.

repofcalifornialawsuitIn 2006, the D.A. said, Altadonna made claims that “the DRX was a patented device having FDA approval or that it was used in a valid scientific study that demonstrated an 86 percent success rate in treating medical conditions like spinal herniation… that the DRX was affiliated with, endorsed or approved by NASA.” The state of Oregon also fined Altadonna for similar things in 2007, the D.A. said, noting Altadonna does business as Doctor’s Wealth Creators and other names.

According to Altadonna, he entered into a stipulated agreement with Oregon’s attorney general in 2007, requiring the chiropractor to change his marketing practices and provide “reliable scientific evidence such as tests, analysis, research, studies…based on the expertise of professionals in the relevant area” to back up his claims, which Altadonna neglected to do.

Altadonna, under the umbrella Altadonna Communications Inc. (ACI) paid civil restitution as part of the agreement.

But, according to the Alameda County D.A., Altadonna is again using pseudonyms to sell and disseminate “thousands of marketing plans to thousands of licensed health care professionals inside and outside the State of California.”

After meeting with the Monterey County D.A. in 2006, Altadonna began transferring assets to co-defendants Altadonna Living Trust and Diablo Park LLC, the state said.

California is seeking an injunction and penalties for false advertising, unfair competition, fraudulent transfer of assets and violations of the Business and Professions Code.

While the next court date and judge have not been assigned, Scott Patton, one of the prosecuting D.A.s, says there is no chance that Altadonna will go to jail.

“Since this is a civil complaint…the court will usually order injunctive terms and (Altadonna) will have to conduct business a certain way and may have to pay restitution if there are injured parties.”

Danville Express