(STL.News) – A St. Louis-area dentist has been sentenced to prison for defrauding Illinois Medicaid out of
hundreds of thousands of dollars over a period of several years. Dr. Yun Sup Kim, 49, of St. Louis,
appeared this morning via videoconference at the federal courthouse in Benton, Illinois, and was
sentenced to 12 months and one day in federal prison. Kim pled guilty to three counts of health
care fraud back in February.
The case against Kim arose from a regulatory audit initiated in 2015 after claims data showed Kim
had performed more cavity fillings and surgical tooth extractions than nearly any other dentist in
Illinois. Investigators discovered that from August 2014 through December 2017, Kim had repeatedly
submitted false bills for cavity fillings and surgical tooth extractions. Court records list over
1,300 patients for whom Kim falsely claimed to have performed eight or more cavity fillings in a
single day. Kim conceded in court that he did not actually numb, drill, and fill cavities in those
teeth. Kim further admitted billing simple extractions to Medicaid as if they had been surgical
extractions, which are more expensive, and confessed that he had falsified dates of service on
numerous occasions to evade Medicaid billing rules for dental sealants.
In April, as part of his plea agreement with the United States, Kim agreed to the entry of a
consent decree revoking his license to practice dentistry in Illinois. Kim’s sentence also includes
restitution to Illinois Medicaid and Medicaid managed care organizations in the amount
$671,845.20, which Kim has already paid in full. United States District Judge Staci M. Yandle found
these factors mitigating but also emphasized the need for a period of incarceration to deter other
health care practitioners from committing the same offense. Judge Yandle observed that many of
Kim’s Medicaid-eligible patients were physically harmed by his failure to provide them proper
dental care and that Kim had not demonstrated any remorse for his conduct.
Kim was ordered to self-surrender for his prison term on Nov. 13, 2020. A one-year term of
supervised release was also imposed.
The investigation was conducted by the Illinois State Police Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, the U.S.
Department of Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General, and the FBI.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Nathan D. Stump prosecuted the case.