Acupuncturist pleads no contest to grand theft, fraud charges

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A former Naples acupuncturist’s medical license was suspended for a year and she was sentenced to probation after pleading to grand theft and fraud charges involving more than $5,000 in treatments she never performed.

It turned out her patient was in the Lee County jail at the time, a State Division of Insurance Fraud investigation found.

Dr. Sebiha Ozturk, who now works in Fort Myers, pleaded no contest Wednesday to grand theft between $300 and $5,000 and fraudulent use of personal identification information as part of a plea agreement negotiated by Assistant State Attorney Jim Molenaar and defense attorney Mark Youngblood.

The plea deal required a one-year suspension of her medical license. State records show she was licensed in 2007.

Collier Circuit Judge Ramiro Mañalich sentenced her to two years of probation and ordered her to pay $4,437.47 for the investigation, prosecution and court costs. She faced up to five years on each charge, third-degree felonies.

Ozturk, who worked at Naples Acupuncture and Health Clinic, was arrested April 16, 2012, booked into the county jail and released on $5,000 bond.

Insurance investigators said she billed insurance companies for fraudulent acupuncture treatments for two patients. The State Attorney’s Office filed charges for one case involving a $5,400 insurance claim for treatment she said she’d performed, but the investigation showed he was jailed at the time.

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