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Health News Florida

Lauderhill Pair Charged In Scheme To Sell Fake Nursing Diplomas

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Federal investigators allege the pair assisted individuals in acquiring fake diplomas and transcripts from nursing schools in Broward and Palm Beach counties.

Two South Florida residents face federal charges, accused of participating in a scheme to sell fake nursing degrees to people who had not completed the required courses or clinical training.

According to an indictment, Geralda Adrien, 51, and Woosvelt Predestin, 35, both of Lauderhill, face charges of conspiring to commit wire fraud and mail fraud. They face up to 20 years in federal prison on each count, federal authorities said.

An investigation found that Adrien was president and Predestin an employee for PowerfulU Health Care Services, which advertised itself on social media as a “group of nurses and doctors who want to empower men and women by helping them to become health care providers,” the FBI said in a news release.

Investigators allege that Adrien and Predestin assisted individuals in acquiring fake diplomas and transcripts from nursing schools in Broward and Palm Beach counties by falsely documenting that the individuals had completed the necessary courses and/or clinicals.

Investigators said they provided the false documents to hundreds of students for about $17,000 each.

The case is being prosecuted in conjunction with a related investigation in Maryland, authorities said.

In that case, the owners and operators of nursing schools in Virginia plotted to help unqualified candidates pass nursing board exams and get health care jobs. An affidavit said about 175 graduates of the Virginia nursing school applied to the Maryland Board of Nursing, with 62 licensed practical nurses actively working in Maryland. Authorities said students paid between $6,000 and $18,000 for fake transcripts and certificates.