Two former NBA players have been convicted of defrauding and conspiring to defraud the league’s Health and Benefit Welfare Plan. Will Bynum and Glen Davis heard they had been found guilty in a New York City federal courtroom on Nov. 15. Bynum played with the Detroit Pistons for six years before finishing his professional career with the Washington Wizards. Davis played for the Orlando Magic and Los Angeles Lakers after winning an NBA Championship with the Boston Celtics.
Claims for dental treatment
According to court documents, Bynum and Davis were among 19 former NBA players who participated in a scheme that defrauded the league’s health care benefits program out of approximately $5 million. During a trial that lasted two weeks, the jury heard how Davis submitted claims for dental procedures that were not performed and Bynum received $182,000 after submitting a fraudulent chiropractic claim. Federal prosecutors have convicted 20 people connected to the scheme.
One of the convicted individuals is former NBA player Terrance Williams. Federal prosecutors identified Williams as the ringleader of the scheme when they learned that he received kickbacks from former players who submitted fraudulent health care claims. Williams pleaded guilty to white-collar crimes including fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud in 2022. In August 2023, a federal judge sentenced him to 10 years in a federal prison.
Most white-collar crime defendants plead guilty
The most compelling evidence in white-collar crime cases is often testimony from codefendants who have decided to cooperate with the authorities and paper or electronic documents. The penalties for fraud can be severe, but U.S. attorneys are usually willing to recommend lenient sentences in return for guilty pleas. This is why most people charged with white-collar crimes like larceny, fraud, embezzlement or bribery enter plea agreements.