By Brooks Baehr - bio | email
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – Dr. Carlos Warter, indicted in Hawaii for allegedly pocketing more than $500,000 in fraudulent insurance claims, was arrested in Argentina this week.
Warter was indicted by a federal grand jury in Honolulu in December, 2010. Authorities hope he will be extradited back to the United States to stand trial.
Warter made a comfortable living as a psychiatrist, author, and public speaker. According to his web site Warter's specialty is blending various spiritual healing traditions with modern medicine and science. The site claims he has studied the relationship between healing, spiritual awareness, and practice for almost thirty years. It shows several pictures of him with high profile people including the Pope John Paul II, Colin Powell, and former Hawaii governor Linda Lingle.
What those people did not know is that, according to the indictment, Warter was allegedly stealing by billing the government and others for work he did not perform.
"The allegations are that he was a psychiatrist here in town and had a very successful practice, but that he was billing Medicaid and private insurance companies for psychiatric work that he never performed," FBI Special Agent Tom Simon told Hawaii News Now.
Simon said sometimes Warter was not even in the country when he claimed to have been in Hawaii with patients.
While reviewing records the fraud team at the Hawaii Medical Service Association got suspicious and notified authorities.
"Our FBI investigation learned that Doctor Warter had either relocated to Argentina or Chile. And we had reached out to both embassies trying to locate him. The FBI agent stationed in the embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina contacted us at 4 o'clock this morning with good news, that the Argentineans had arrested Dr. Warter this morning without incident in Argentina," Simon said.
The government believes Warter made $1 million in bogus insurance claims and actually pocketed more than $530,000 he wasn't entitled to.
"Again, this is just an allegation. Our goal is to make sure he gets his day in court," Simon added.