Psychologist Sentenced to Four Months, $496,101 Restitution for False and Improper Bills to Government

A psychologist who admitted submitting more than 1,100 false bills for treatment of government employees has been sentenced in federal court in San Francisco to four months in prison and ordered to pay $496,101 in restitution.

Helena Weil, 64, of Kensington, was sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer.

Weil formerly treated federal employees, many of them U.S. Postal Service workers, who had work-related injuries and received psychological services through the U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs.

She pleaded guilty before Breyer in July to one count of falsification of records.

During her guilty plea, Weil admitted that she submitted to the workers’ compensation office more than 1,100 false claims for in-person treatment of patients at times when she was on vacation or in training between 2006 and 2009. Those bills amounted to $175,174.

Prosecutors said in a sentencing brief that the dates cited in the bills included the times of 10 vacation trips to Hawaii as well as other trips outside the Bay Area.

Prosecutors said the restitution amount included the $175,174 for the falsified bills she admitted to in the plea, as well as an additional $320,927 pertaining to other falsified or improper bills submitted for dates when she was not on vacation or in training. Weil agreed to the additional restitution in the plea agreement.

Breyer ordered Weil to begin serving her sentence on July 24.

Julia Cheever, Bay City News

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