February 22, 2024

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3 South Florida nursing schools sold 7,600 fake degrees; 25 charged

3 South Florida nursing schools sold 7,600 fake degrees; 25 charged

MIAMI – 3 now-shuttered South Florida nursing educational institutions sold extra than $100 million worthy of of pretend nursing diplomas, major authorities to demand more than two dozen persons, federal prosecutors said Wednesday afternoon.

U.S. Legal professional for the Southern District of Florida Markenzy Lapointe and representatives from FBI Miami and Department of Health and fitness and Human Products and services Business of Inspector Basic spoke at a news meeting in Miami Wednesday.

Authorities charged 25 people today across multiple states in the plan, prosecutors explained.

(A list of individuals billed seems at the base of the write-up.)

Prosecutors have produced 21 arrests, with two more suspects anticipated to surrender in the coming times. Individuals charged had been from Florida, New York, New Jersey, Texas and Delaware.

“Individuals have been charged across various states with wire fraud crimes, like conspiracy,” Lapointe explained.

They dubbed the crackdown “Operation Nightingale,” after legendary nurse Florence Nightingale.

Lapointe claimed in the scheme, owners, operators and workers of three formerly-accredited South Florida nursing educational institutions would offer fake diplomas and transcripts for an regular of $15,000.

That group built up the first class of those people billed.

“The nursing candidates had finished no operate for these diplomas,” he stated.

The a few colleges had been the Sacred Coronary heart Worldwide Institute in Fort Lauderdale, Siena College or university of Wellbeing in Lauderhill and the Palm Seaside Faculty of Nursing in West Palm Seashore.

The second classification of defendants bundled recruiters who would carry “students” from other states to get the “shortcut” files from the South Florida colleges, Lapointe reported.

“This was genuinely huge-scale,” he stated.

Around 7,600 fake nursing diplomas have been bought by the South Florida faculties, in accordance to prosecutors.

“We’re seeking at all-around $114 million paid for these paperwork,” Lapointe mentioned.

Virtually a third of the bogus diploma-holders could be training, officers claimed. Individuals diploma-holders have been equipped to move a composed nursing exam.

“The very last thing we want to learn is that the nurses administering the prescription drugs, the kinds billed with carrying out a doctor’s orders took shortcuts on their clinical training and used fake nursing diplomas to get their licenses and employment,” Lapointe said. “Unfortunately, hundreds of men and women have taken these shortcuts.”

A lot of of people who purchased the phony levels experienced health and fitness care practical experience, Lapointe mentioned, including licensed simple nurses.

“Whether or not you passed the licensing test, to me, that is beside the point,” he reported. “To me, if you pass the exam, but you have not carried out (needed clinical modules), which is no redemption in any way in any way.”

Lapointe stated agents have alerted nursing boards across the state about the fraud.

An FBI specific agent claimed South Florida “lead(s) the nation in wellbeing care fraud” and claimed condition nursing boards could be having motion in opposition to the accused fraudulent nurses.

Officials stated they have not discovered of any hurt to individuals joined to those people who obtained fraudulent diplomas, but did say they are functioning with condition licensing boards to assure anyone who received a fraudulent diploma no more time gives treatment.

“We know who they are,” Lapointe said.

The next men and women had been billed in the situation:

  • Gail Russ

  • Cheryl Stanley

  • Krystal Lopez

  • Ricky Riley

  • Norberto Lopez

  • Francois Legangeur

  • Reynoso Seide

  • Cassandre Jean

  • Yelva Saint Preux

  • Evangeline Naissant

  • Rony Michel

  • Vilaire Duroseau

  • Yvrose Thermitus, aka “Yvrose Thompson”

  • Ludnie Jean

  • Serge Jean

  • Simon Itaman

  • Anna Itaman

  • Rhomy Louis

  • Nadege Auguste

  • Stanton Witherspoon

  • Alfred Sellu

  • Rene Bernadel

  • Eunide Sanon

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