Federal authorities announced that Sergei Kusyakov, who acted as an agent for chiropractic clinics and a local injury hotline, paid hospital employees to illegally access patient information. According to the Orlando Sentinel, Kusyakov illegally obtained private information about patients through Dale Munroe II and his wife, Katrina Munroe, who worked at Florida Hospital’s Celebration campus. Munroe accessed more than 763,000 records over two years, and Kusyakov used the information to solicit patients for lawyers and chiropractors.

Dale Munroe worked as a registration representative in the emergency department, and from 2009 to July 20111, he illegally accessed records and inappropriately reviewed more than 12,000 patient records in detail. However, Dale Munroe was fired in July 2011 after officials learned he accessed the medical records of a Florida Hospital doctor who was fatally shot in a hospital parking garage. Dale’s wife, Katrina, also worked at the hospital as an insurance representative and began stealing the patient information.

Munroe focused primarily on patients who were in automobile accidents. He would then send the information to Kusyakov, who would have someone call the patient within about a week of their hospital visit. The caller, who knew details about the vehicle accident, would offer them a lawyer or chiropractor referral. Some patients questioned how the caller received their personal information, and the solicitor would either explain that the information was public record or hang up.

In August 2011, the solicitors called a patient’s mother who worked at the hospital. When they offered legal services, the woman confronted the solicitor, knowing that they should not have her daughter’s information. The caller hung up, but the hospital employee reported the incident to Florida Hospital. Investigators linked Munroe to Kusyakov through telephone records and money, and they discovered that Kusyakov paid the Munroe’s more than $10,000 for their work.

Kusyakov also employed “runners” to gather people to participate in staged car accidents so those people could seek treatment at his clinics and they could bill the insurance companies. He recently pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States and four counts of making a payment to a non-licensed physician. He will be sentenced on March 25 and faces up to 15 years in prison. The Munroe’s both pleaded guilty to federal charges and are awaiting sentencing.