Alaska doctor pleads guilty to wire fraud in Louisiana

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NEW ORLEANS – U.S. Attorney Peter G. Strasser announced that Dr. Andrew J. Van Atta, age 37, from Wasilla, Alaska, pled guilty to wire fraud.

Van Atta pled guilty to the one-count indictment that charged him with committing wire fraud from January of 2017 through May of 2018.

Van Atta had his primary residence in New Orleans, Louisiana, from the period beginning in or around 2013 and ending in or around 2017. He attended medical school from 2013 through 2017, when he graduated and became a doctor.

In or around the end of 2017, Van Atta moved to Alaska.

According to court documents, starting in January of 2017, when Van Atta was a medical student, and continuing after he graduated, Van Atta used multiple email accounts and PayPal accounts to impersonate numerous other physicians while filling out surveys with a survey company that paid Van Atta for surveys that the victim company believed were completed by various other physicians.

The company paid Van Atta a total of over $114,000 for the surveys completed under the fake names.

Van Atta will be sentenced on Tuesday, February 18, 2020.

Van Atta faces up to twenty years in prison, followed by up to three years of supervised release, and a fine of up to $250,000 or twice the gross gain to Van Atta or the gross loss to any victims.

U.S. Attorney Strasser praised the work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

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