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Alleged Covid-19 fraud schemes totaling $150m lead to criminal charges

Federal prosecutors have indicted about 20 people in the past two weeks for participating in various fraud schemes related to the Covid-19 pandemic that amounted to about $150 million in improper government payments, officials said.

The charges come as the Justice Department steps up its efforts to uncover the theft of programs that pumped billions of dollars into the health care system after the pandemic hit in 2020. The new cases are being filed in districts across the country and provide a comprehensive overview. about how some health care providers allegedly sought to trick Medicare and other programs by bundling charges for unnecessary services — or those that were never provided — with the provision of relatively inexpensive Covid-19 tests .