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Doc used Ozone Park clinic to bilk insurance firms: DA

Over a four-year span starting in March 2001, Vladimir Kirkorov, a physiatrist from Staten Island, allegedly billed six insurance companies for expensive treatment he never gave to car accident victims who in turn were neglected care for actual injuries, the DA said.The medical clinics the DA cited included Lane Medical at 107-40 Queens Blvd. in Forest Hills, Primerica Medical at 97-13 101st Ave. in Ozone Park and Roosevelt Medical at 11-16 Roosevelt Ave. in Jackson Heights. Phone numbers listed under those addresses were either disconnected or no longer in service.Kirkorov, 54, and Lane Medical were also targeted in a sweeping two-year investigation that led to the January 2004 indictments of more than 30 doctors, attorneys and other medical professionals suspected of bilking insurance carriers of hundreds of thousands of dollars through similar fraudulent methods.The investigation, Operation Sideswipe, found that the scheme involved grooming a stable of runners who hired clients to stage car accidents and seek unneeded and costly treatment at Lane Medical and another clinic in Richmond Hill. Lawyers and doctors, including Kirkorov and two others from Queens, then filed false lawsuits and submitted claims for fake or exaggerated injuries and property damage, for which insurance companies gave more than $236,000 in reimbursement, according to the DA.The defendants face up to seven years in prison if convicted on charges of insurance fraud, grand larceny, conspiracy and falsifying business records. About 20 have so far pleaded guilty to various charges and the remaining defendants await future appearances at Queens State Supreme Court.On top of Kirkorov's indictment in the pending 2004 case, for which he is due back in court April 12, the DA said he could face another seven years in jail if convicted on the most recent charges, which also stemmed from Operation Sideswipe. A DA spokesman said Kirkorov posted $25,000 bail and a court date for his new case has not been set."The defendant has been charged for a second time with attempting to steal from insurance companies," said Brown, who emphasized that such fraud, which costs the insurance industry about $23 billion a year nationwide, inevitably raises consumers' premiums.Some treatment procedures the DA said Kirkorov billed to insurance companies included more than $6,000 for a nerve conduction velocity/needle electromygraphy test and $230 for a medical examination.Reach reporter Zach Patberg by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 155.

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