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Thief River Falls chiropractor sentenced for insurance fraud

THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn. — A Thief River Falls chiropractor who was paid $1.1 million from false insurance claims was sentenced Tuesday, June 18, for wire fraud and will spend just over two years in prison. Seven related charges were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.

Steven Richard Wiseth, 36, falsely billed insurance companies after hosting events, such as “ValenSpine’s Day,” at his Thief River Falls clinic, Health Quest Family Chiropractic, according to a federal indictment. From March 2013 to April 2015, he billed insurance companies more than $3.1 million worth of claims and was paid $1.1 million, court documents said.

Wiseth, who opened Health Quest in the early 2010s, would host promotional events where he would give away free food, prizes and gift certificates to prompt current and prospective clients to visit the office. Charges said Wiseth would then bill the insurance companies for services not provided to guests during the events.

Widseth routinely billed for a treatment with a “wobble chair,” which is a device intended to develop core strength. Widseth claimed he’d spent at least eight minutes with clients individually working on the “wobble chair,” but court documents revealed he placed them in waiting rooms so patients would sit in them while waiting for appointments.

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