LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) — U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley says former Lafayette cardiologist Mehmood Patel has begun serving his maximum 10-year sentence for Medicaid fraud.

Finley said Thursday that the 67-year-old Patel turned himself in on Monday to federal marshals in Lafayette.

Patel was convicted in 2009 on 51 counts of health care fraud. Experts said he used radiation, stents and balloons in healthy arteries, lying to patients and falsifying records.

Finley says Patel billed Medicare and private insurance companies more than $3 million over three years, including nearly $542,000 for unnecessary work. She says the indictment covered less than $90,000 of that.

Patel had been free while appealing the case, but the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last month rejected a request to stay free while appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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