Man accused of posing as chiropractor in Orlando clinic

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ORLANDO, Fla. - A man who allegedly posed as a chiropractor at an Orlando clinic performed more than 80 treatments on patients, and the doctor allowed it to happen, authorities said.

Dr. Frederick Freeman, chiropractor at Blessings Rehab Center, and two others are facing fraud charges, accused of bilking insurance companies out of more than $67,000 in illegal treatments.

Office manager Diana Merice allegedly hired her friend, Ibenick Paul, who is accused of posing as a medical professional and treating patients in 2009 without a medical license.

Freeman's office went on to bill insurance companies for thousands of dollars, authorities said.

Insurance experts said this type of fraud is on the rise in central Florida after starting off in South Florida, moving into Tampa, and facing increased pressure from law enforcement there.

Freeman's Blessings Rehab Center was just an empty storefront when Channel 9 News visited looking for answers. Paul has since become a certified chiropractic physician's assistant, but at least one neighbor was surprised at his conduct.

"It's taking taxpayer money," said neighbor Jose Flores.  "Really, we pay for that with insurance companies. I think it's fraud."