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Joint Investigation Leads to Unlicensed Activity Arrest in Kissimmee
June 16, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 16, 2014
Contact: Communications Office
TALLAHASSEE—The Florida Department of Health’s Unlicensed Activity (ULA) Unit today announced that a joint investigation with the Osceola County Investigative Bureau (OCIB) led to the arrest of Gustavo Aranguren Hernan for the alleged unlicensed practice of dentistry, a third degree felony punishable by up to one year in jail.
“The Department is committed to working with other enforcement agencies to protect the health of all Floridians,” said Dr. John Armstrong, State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health. “Those who display complete disregard for the safety of Florida’s families through the unlicensed practice of a health care profession will be identified and stopped. This arrest highlights the importance of choosing a licensed professional for your health care needs.”
The joint operation was conducted on May 16, 2014, at Gustavo Aranguren Hernan’s residence, located at 279 Coralwood Court in Kissimmee, based on an anonymous tip which alleged that Aranguren was practicing dentistry out of his residence. Law enforcement officers found a fully equipped dentistry office in Aranguren’s garage and he confessed to practicing dentistry out of his residence without being duly licensed. Aranguren indicated he had treated approximately 200 patients over the past year and a half. OCIB confiscated dental equipment and $112,800 in cash.
On May 19, 2014, the Orlando ULA office hand-served a notice to cease and desist and an unlicensed activity citation, with a total fine of $1,368, to Gustavo Aranguren Hernan for practicing dentistry without a license. On June 10, 2014, Gustavo Aranguren Hernan surrendered to the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office on an arrest warrant for the unlicensed practice of a health care profession, practicing dentistry without a license, and possession of certain drugs with intent to dispense or deliver.
The Department has several resources to combat unlicensed activity:
- Consumers are encouraged to visit www.flhealthsource.com, where they can conveniently view the license information of their health care practitioner.
- Complaints may be filed anonymously by completing and mailing the complaint form on the Department website, or by calling 1-877-HALT-ULA or 1-888-419-3456.
The Department’s ULA program protects Florida residents and visitors from the potentially serious and dangerous consequences of receiving medical and health care services from an unlicensed person. The Division of Medical Quality Assurance (MQA) investigates and refers for prosecution all unlicensed health care activity complaints and allegations. The ULA unit works in conjunction with law enforcement and state attorney’s offices to prosecute individuals practicing without a license. In many instances, unlicensed activity is a felony-level criminal offense. More importantly, receiving health care from unlicensed people is dangerous and could result in further injury, disease, or even death.
Working in conjunction with 22 boards and six councils, MQA regulates seven types of facilities and 200-plus license types in more than 40 healthcare professions. MQA evaluates the credentials of all applicants for licensure, issues licenses, analyzes and investigates complaints, inspects facilities, assists in prosecuting practice act violations, combats unlicensed activity and provides credential and discipline history about licensees to the public.
The Department works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.