Five former Nets players and a former assistant coach of the Long Island Nets were among 18 former NBA players charged Thursday in an alleged multi-million-dollar health insurance fraud scheme to rip off the league’s benefit plan. The charges are federal and all will be arraigned in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.
Among those indicted: former Nets draft picks Terrence Williams, Antoine Wright and Chris Douglas-Roberts (also identified in the indictment as “aka Supreme Bey”) as well as Nets journeymen C.J. Watson, Alan Anderson and his wife. Milt Palacio, who was an assistant coach for the Long Island Nets in 2019-20, was also charged in the scam. Palacio, currently an assistant with the Trail Blazers, was placed on administrative leave after the indictment.
Jonathan Dienst of WNBC New York and Tom Winter and Courtney Copenhagen of NBC News broke the story and reported that Williams was the alleged “ringleader” of the scam that was centered on filing false medical and dental claims with the players health and welfare fund. They describe the charges against TWill, taken 11th in the 2009 Draft...
Williams allegedly orchestrated the years-long scheme and recruited other NBA health plan participants to assist by offering them fake invoices to support their allegedly false health plan claims. He is accused of receiving kickback payments totaling at least $230,000 in return for providing the alleged false documentation.
The 34-year-old Williams also allegedly helped three co-defendants — Ronald Glen Davis, Charles Watson Jr. and Antoine Wright — obtain fake letters of medical necessity to justify some of the services on which the false invoices were based.
Williams also allegedly impersonated an individual who processed plan claims at one point in furtherance of his alleged scheme.
All of the indicted individuals face charges of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and wire fraud as well as aggravated identity theft, according to the indictment. Winter reported shortly after noon that 16 of the 18 charged were already in federal custody.
Williams played two years for the Nets then had stints with the Celtics, Rockets and Kings. He had run-ins with various team personnel and the media while in New Jersey. He also has previous arrests, including one in 2013 in which he was accused of brandishing a gun at the mother of his 10-year-old son during a visitation exchange in Kent, Washington.
Also charged was Sebastian Telfair, cousin of Stephon Marbury and a Brooklyn icon of his own. Telfair who was drafted straight out of Lincoln High School in Coney Island never met expectations, much like several of those charged.
The most prominent ex-players nabbed include six-time NBA All-Defensive Team member Tony Allen and Glen Davis, who won a ring with the 2008 NBA champion Celtics.
Here’s the complete list from the indictment...
- NBA Vets Indicted in Alleged Multi-Million-Dollar Health Insurance Fraud Scheme - Jonathan Dienst, Tom Winter & Courtney Copenhagen - WNBC
- Over a dozen ex-NBA players charged with multimillion-dollar fraud - Rebecca Rosenberg - New York Post
- Former NBA Players Charged in $4 Million Health-Insurance Fraud - James Fanelli & Corinne Ramey - Wall Street Journal
- 18 Former N.B.A. Players Charged in Health Care Fraud - Larry Neumeister & Tim Reynolds - AP
- The NBA’s health-care plan honors the league’s past. This alleged fraud disrespects it. - Candace Buckner - Washington Post