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Coast Guard busts Florida man wanted in $4M Medicare fraud trying to flee to Cuba on jet ski

Handcuffs. (Keith Allison/Flickr)

A Florida man accused of orchestrating a multi-million-dollar health care scam tried to flee on a jet ski, according to prosecutors.

Ernesto Cruz Graveran, 54, was arrested in Key West, where he planned to ride his jet ski to Cuba, the Department of Justice announced Tuesday.

Graveran, the owner of Xiko Enterprises, Inc. a company that claimed to provide durable medical equipment to eligible Medicare beneficiaries, allegedly submitted fraudulent health care claims worth $4.2 million to Medicare for equipment that was never requested by or provided to beneficiaries in just two months this year, according to prosecutors.

After he was charged, the U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers found Graveran floating in the water south of Key West on a broken-down jet ski, the DOJ said.

The jet ski had been adapted for longer trips, presumably to cover the 90 miles from South West to Cuba, as well as a supply of food and water.

A suspected human smuggler was also with Graveran.

Graveran has been ordered to be held without bail at the Federal Detention Center in Miami until his trial.

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