Owner of medical centres jailed over 298 fraud charges

A QUEENSLAND man who has been described as a "medical entrepreneur" has been jailed after fleecing more than $394,900 from taxpayers after lodging false Medicare claims.

Bryan Edwin Thompson, 57, pleaded guilty to 298 charges of obtaining financial advantage through deception on Wednesday  in the Brisbane District Court.

The court heard Thompson, who was the owner of three south-east Queensland medical practices, lodged the claims electronically between February 2008 and January 2010 seeking reimbursement for bulk billed medical services which had not been provided.

Crown Prosecutor Aimee Aisthorpe told the court Thompson leased premises and employed medical practitioners to render services to patients from the three medical centres.

She said Thompson lodged the claims at times when doctors at the three medical practices were either on annual leave or rostered days off.

"The total amount of the fraud was very significant," she said.

"The fraud was very calculated and conducted over a period of two years.

"He continued to offend even when he was made aware he was under investigation."

The court heard Thompson had previously been convicted and jailed for 50 separate fraud related offences spanning two decades.

Judge Julie Dick said she did not believe Thompson had shown any remorse despite his guilty plea and sentenced him to five-years in prison.

"You must have known when you came to court your past would come back to bit you and it has," Judge Dick said.

"This was a large scale fraud committed against the Commonwealth and essentially taxpayers.

"I do not believe you have any intention of paying the money back, despite what you might say.

"You can not buy your way out of jail," she said.

Thompson will be eligible for parole on June 16, 2015.

Topics:  editors picks fraud medicare

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