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Fraud Trial for WellCare Ex-CEO Shows Medicaid Abuse

In October 2007, Todd Farha and his company were thriving. The chief executive officer of WellCare Health Plans Inc. had sold $57 million of his stock over three years as the share price rose seven-fold. Starting in 2002 with seed money from a George Soros fund, he had built WellCare into the largest insurer in Florida’s Medicaid program.

Then, on Oct. 24, the FBI raided the company’s Tampa headquarters. A whistle-blower accused Farha of leading a plot to defraud Medicaid, the U.S.-state health program for the poor. Farha, then 39, lost his job. WellCare has since paid $427.5 million in settlements to government agencies and shareholders.