Justice on Tuesday said Portis, Tamarick Vanover and Robert McCune pleaded guilty on Aug. 24 to charges related to their participation in a scheme to defraud the Gene Upshaw NFL Player Health Reimbursement Account Plan.
The reimbursement plan, established through the league’s collective bargaining agreement in 2006, provides former players $350,000 yearly for medical expenses that are not covered by insurance.
Portis allegedly submitted false and fraudulent claims to the league’s retirement plan for two months and obtained $99,264 in benefits for expensive medical equipment that was not provided by his plan, according to court documents.
Portis, a two-time Pro Bowl selection, played for the Washington Football Team and the Denver Broncos during his nine-year professional career.
Vanover, a former Florida State University standout, is accused of recruiting three other players in the scheme and obtaining $159,510 in benefits.
McCune, a former teammate of Portis, was the main orchestrator of the scheme, obtaining nearly $2.9 million in benefits, with the program paying out most of the money between June 2017 and April 2018, the Justice Department said.
The three men join the growing list of NFL players who have pleaded guilty to the health care scam. Others who have pleaded guilty include Joe Horn, Correll Buckhalter, Carlos Rogers, and Donald “Reche” Caldwell, who was killed in an attempted robbery in June 2020.
Portis and Vanover, who have agreed to pay back what they took from the plan, are scheduled to be sentenced in January. Each man faces a maximum 10-year sentence.
McCune, who is scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 19, is facing a maximum prison sentence for each count in the health care scheme, which could leave him in prison for life.