Former Loreto Hospital executive charged with embezzlement


A former high-level executive at Loretto Hospital has been charged with federal charges alleging he embezzled nearly half a million dollars from the small safety-net facility on Chicago's West Side at the height of the COVID-19 crisis. Had helped in embezzlement.

Heather Bergdahl, 37, who currently lives in the Houston area, was accused of embezzling from the federally funded program in a criminal complaint made public Monday.

Bergdahl was arrested shortly before a scheduled flight to Dubai on Thursday night. He is scheduled to have a detention hearing Monday in U.S. District Court in Houston, court records show. There was no attorney listed for him in the document.

The charges are the first arising from the ongoing federal grand jury investigation into Loretto Hospital's vaccination program, which came under fire after hundreds of COVID vaccines were administered at a suburban church associated with then-CEO George Miller , at a time where vaccination doses were still insufficient.

Around the same time, Loretto's board reprimanded Miller and the hospital's former chief financial officer, Dr. Anosh Ahmed, after the hospital improperly vaccinated ineligible staff at Trump Tower Downtown and Cook County Judge.

Ahmed resigned in 2021 after the hospital's board voted to fire him. Miller was suspended and later released from the hospital in April 2022 amid the fallout. Neither Ahmed nor Miller have been criminally charged, although the investigation is ongoing.

According to the 20-page criminal complaint, Ahmed knew Bergdahl from their time working together in Houston and hired her in 2020 as the hospital's chief transformation officer, which included cutting checks to vendors and providing “screening and COVID-19 testing.” Handling the outreach for 19 tests and vaccines.”

Although Ahmed was referred to only as Individual A in the complaint, details of his employment history confirm his identity.

In June 2021, just months after resigning, Ahmed opened four business bank accounts in the names MedLabs USA, Chicago Promotion Ltd., Illinois Biotech Company, and Midwest Medical Supplies, all listing himself as CEO and at the 400 block Gave an address. North Wabash Avenue, where he lived at the time, the complaint said.

On the same day the accounts were opened, Bergdahl began cutting checks to Ahmed's companies, even though he had done no work for the hospital. Over the next six months, Bergdahl issued 11 checks totaling $486,000, the complaint alleges.

Records show Ahmed's companies, in turn, were sending thousands of dollars back to Bergdahl, including a payment of $79,000 on July 26, 2021, and two payments, $75,000 and $10,000, on August 18, 2021.
The complaint alleges a payment of $81,000 was made on September 23, 2021, and a payment of $25,000 on January 10, 2022.

Records show Bergdahl left Loretto in March 2022, shortly before Miller's resignation.

His LinkedIn profile currently lists him as the Chief Financial Officer of Enosh Inc., a Houston-based alternative investment firm. Her biography states that she is “a doctor, coffee connoisseur, automotive enthusiast, businesswoman, and world traveler” and that her previous work experience includes “fraud investigations.”

The bio states, “She has moved 8 times, traveled the world and seen places and things many people only dream about.” “She lives her life with the belief, 'The best is yet to come!'”

The charges against Bergdahl come two years after a federal grand jury subpoenaed the state Department of Public Health for information about dozens of people who were given shots by Loretto — at Trump Tower and elsewhere, according to released records. Same time frame as vaccination given. State wise.

That investigation later expanded to include Valley Kingdom Ministries International Church in Oak Forest, where hundreds of congregants were reportedly vaccinated while shots were still in short supply and only those 65 and older. were to be given to the people and front-line workers.

The vaccination program also came as health and community leaders stressed the need to distribute vaccines equitably, making sure hard-hit communities in the South and West get the shots.

At the time, the Chicago Department of Public Health said it suspended vaccination distribution in Loretto after learning of potential vaccine delivery issues. The city later stepped in to manage the clinic at the hospital to help ensure Austin residents could get priority vaccinations.

Governor JB Pritzker and then-Mayor Lori Lightfoot said the city and state were cooperating with investigators.

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