A jury convicted a Lewiston woman Friday of multiple federal crimes involving health care fraud.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office announced the verdict in a press release at the end of a five-day trial in Portland. Nancy Ludwig, 65, was convicted of health care fraud conspiracy, paying kickbacks, using fraudulent medical documents and obstructing an audit.

The press release stated Ludwig was the owner of Facing Change, a mental health and substance abuse counseling agency in Lewiston. Beginning in 2015, she agreed to pay a Somali interpreter a kickback in return for him bringing MaineCare beneficiaries to Facing Change. That interpreter and others submitted false claims to MaineCare for counseling and interpreter services. They adapted the scheme in response to regulatory changes for MaineCare and manufactured false records in an attempt to deceive an auditor.

The fraud continued until May 2018 when federal and state agents executed search warrants at Facing Change and the interpreter’s businesses.

The interpreter, Abdirashid Ahmed, pleaded guilty last month to conspiring to commit health care fraud. The U.S. Attorney’s Office said five other people have been convicted of health care crime felonies related to this case, and two have agreed to civil settlements.

Ludwig faces up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine. She has not yet been sentenced.

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