A Boston man who worked as a dentist in Hyannis pleaded guilty to a $1.2 million embezzlement fraud scheme, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts.
- Read more: Why a Western Mass. senator is ‘discouraged’ by Lego’s move to Boston
Jack Massarsky, 65, embezzled the $1.2 million from his employer, and fraudulently obtained government benefits in his employer’s name, the office stated. He pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud and one count of wire fraud before U.S. District Court Chief Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV. Massarsky was charged on Dec. 13, 2022, and his sentencing is scheduled for May 15, 2023.
Massarsky worked as a dentist and bookkeeper for a general dentistry practice in Hyannis from 2015 until 2021. When he first began with the practice in 2015, Massarsky opened a “secret bank account” in the name of the practice, and was then able to intercept checks sent to the dentistry practice for insurance reimbursement.
- Read more: A hunting ban in Worcester would have unintended consequences, land trust exec says
Massarsky would deposit those checks into the secret bank account, continuing to do so for over five years and embezzling a total of over $1.2 million. The office stated the dentist used the stolen cash for “personal and family expenses.”
The office added that Massarsky also used his practice’s name to defraud the United States by applying for COVID relief funds from the Health Resources and Services Administration Provider Relief Fund (HRSA PRF) in the name of the practice in July 2020, and ended up depositing over $52,000 in relief funds into the secret bank account.
The HRSA is part of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, and gives healthcare to those who are “geographically isolated or otherwise vulnerable,” the office said. The HRSA gave financial relief to qualifying healthcare providers during the pandemic, including some dentistry practices.
- Read more: Why haven’t I gotten COVID? Medical experts weigh in.
A mail fraud and a wire fraud charge each can allow for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, the office said, along with three years of supervised release, a $250,000 fine or twice the gross gain or loss — whichever is greater, and in this case, it would be double the $1.2 million — along with restitution and forfeiture.
United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins and Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division made the announcement of Massarsky’s guilty plea on Jan. 25. The office stated assistance in the investigation was provided by the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General.
- Read more: Compromise Greenfield policing plan leaves 4-hour gap in night coverage
Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Markham of Rollins’ Securities, Financial & Cyber Fraud Unit were prosecuting the case, the office said.