An Indiana man pleaded guilty in federal court in Kansas City on Monday to participating in a multimillion dollar fraud scheme that included impersonating employees of Cerner Corp.
Scheme participants solicited more than $6 million in investments from dozens of doctors, and they engineered the sale of a $1 million MRI system to a Dallas hospital, according to federal prosecutors.
David Hernon, 54, pleaded guilty Monday in U.S. District Court to conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Three other defendants previously pleaded guilty to taking part in the fraudulent activity between 2008 and February of this year.
According to prosecutors, the four defendants created dozens of companies with the intent to impersonate actual companies such as North Kansas City-based Cerner.
They took steps to register Internet domains similar to the domains of existing companies, set up addresses and phone numbers in the cities where the legitimate companies were based and impersonated actual employees of those companies.
They used these fake employee identities as well as the identities of fictional employees to communicate with investors, conduct business transactions and manipulate court proceedings. They provided phony documents and invoices that purported to be from the fake and fictional employees, according to prosecutors.
One of the schemes involved selling the MRI system to a Dallas hospital that only learned of the fraud after contacting Cerner for help in installing the system.
Conspirators also used false information to solicit doctors to invest in what donors thought was a state-of-the-art MRI system, which was actually a system put together with used components.
Phony documents and testimony also were used by the defendants to litigate and win judgments in court cases.
The other defendants are David Tayce, 66, of Lucas, Texas, and Richard Bryant and his wife, Christina Bryant, both 40, of Sachse, Texas.
They each face up to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $250,000. Sentencing dates have not been scheduled.