Houston clinic owner sentenced in illegal kickback and money laundering scheme

Published 8:16 am Friday, January 7, 2022

HOUSTON – A Houston clinic owner has have been ordered to federal prison following her convictions in an illegal kickback and money laundering scheme at a Harwin Drive business, announced U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.

Anurag Dass aka Anna Dass, 49, Houston, pleaded guilty to illegal kickbacks and money laundering for her role in the scheme in August 2019.

Today, U.S. District Judge Alfred Bennett ordered her to serve 24 months in prison to be immediately followed by two years of supervised release. She was further ordered to pay $2,242,899 in restitution.

Anna Dass operated A&A Pain and Wellness Center Inc. on Harwin Drive in Southwest Houston along with her brother Ankul Dass. Anna Dass admitted she submitted or caused others to file false claims with the Office of Worker Compensation Programs (OWCP) for patients Stephen Hunt directed to the clinic. Hunt was a former injured employee with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) who filed his own injury claim with OWCP.

The Dass siblings conspired with Hunt for him to direct injured federal workers to the center for medical treatment and health care services. All three admitted Hunt would receive a fee as payment from the center for each claim OWCP paid. Hunt also charged a fee to injured federal workers he had referred for his representation and services through a company he controlled under the name “Zentec.”

Anna Dass was the manager of Clinical Operations at the clinic, while Anukul Dass was the clinic director. Anna Dass filed false claims for services which were not authorized and not performed by a licensed physical therapist. Anna Dass admitted she received $2,242,899 in reimbursements from the unlawful activity.

Hunt, 70, Waxahachie, and Anukul Dass aka Andy Dass, 44, Houston, were also convicted for their roles in the scheme – each pleading guilty to illegal kickbacks

Previously released on bond, Anna Dass was permitted to remain on bond and voluntarily surrender to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

The USPS – Office of Inspector General (OIG) and Department of Labor – OIG conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael Day and Kristine Rollinson are prosecuting this case.