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Man who ran ‘deplorable’ homes for mental patients indicted in $1.27 million fraud

Marcus Lloyd Anderson, 34, used employees’ identities to collect money from Medicaid for services never rendered, a federal indictment says.
Marcus Anderson, who ran assisted living centers in St. Petersburg, was indicted on 13 federal charges in connection with a health care fraud scheme, according to court records. Anderson, 34, is shown here from a 2017 arrest on a charge of exploiting the elderly. The charge was dropped.
Marcus Anderson, who ran assisted living centers in St. Petersburg, was indicted on 13 federal charges in connection with a health care fraud scheme, according to court records. Anderson, 34, is shown here from a 2017 arrest on a charge of exploiting the elderly. The charge was dropped. [ Pinellas County jail ]
Published Sep. 26, 2019

A St. Petersburg landlord who ran assisted living centers for mental health patients is accused in a federal indictment of using the identities of former employees to defraud the government of nearly $1.27 million in Medicaid money.

Marcus Lloyd Anderson, 34, was supposed to use the money to provide counseling and psychiatric services to his residents, according to federal court records. He faces seven counts of health care fraud and six counts of identity fraud.

Last year, St. Petersburg police shut down two of the homes Anderson ran under the company Tampa Bay Behavioral Health Centers.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: St. Petersburg police remove disabled adults from ‘deplorable’ assisted living facilities

A police officer came across a resident on the front porch at one of the homes who told him about squalid conditions there and invited him inside to see for himself, police spokeswoman Yolanda Fernandez said.

Police investigated and found “deplorable conditions” at both homes, including mattresses on the floor and no food for residents. One home had open sewage in it. Residents at both homes went without running water for three days.

Nine residents were removed and the homes, at 3434 Second Ave. S and 3418 Second Ave. S, were deemed uninhabitable.

“At that time we definitely launched an investigation," Fernandez said, “but when it was apparent there could be bigger issues at hand, that’s when we worked with the feds and turned everything over to them.”

Anderson was arrested in St. Petersburg, Fernandez said.

According to the indictment, filed Tuesday, Anderson submitted the fraudulent claims in January, February and April 2016, and January 2018. He submitted them using the identities of two psychiatrists and one licensed mental health counselor.

One of the psychiatrists worked for Anderson from late 2014 to April 2015. The other worked for him from February 2015 to June 2017. The counselor started in November 2014 and left in June 2015.

Anderson directed others to help him hide the fraud, the indictment says. The total amount of fraudulent payments reached at least $1.27 million.

Anderson had other business interests, too.

He owned a nightclub called the Sugar Room on Fourth Street S that had become a nuisance spot for police.

It was the site of a shooting last year in which a 33-year-old man died in a volley of 26 rounds from an assault rifle.