After an eight-month investigation, local authorities arrested and extradited Gary Wayne Bogle, charging him with 10 felony counts of false impersonation for using his brother’s identity to receive medical treatment.

The nightmare is nearing an end for Santa Clara county resident Ronnie Bogle, after authorities arrested his long lost brother, Gary Wayne Bogle, and charged him with 10 felony counts of false impersonation. Ronnie says for the past five years, he has been plagued with bills for thousands of dollars in medical treatments he never received. Bogle believed, and authorities agree, he was the victim of medical identity theft, committed by his own brother.

Santa Clara County prosecutors charged Gary Bogle with 10 felony counts of false impersonation for racking up medical bills and criminal arrests using Ronnie’s name, social security number and health insurance information. If convicted, he faces up to 9 years in prison.

“We used to tell people it was a smart idea to check your credit report every year just to make sure there wasn’t something going on that you didn’t know about. Now it’s a good idea to look at your medical records as well,” said Tom Flattery, Santa Clara county deputy district attorney.

Ann Patterson leads the Medical ID Fraud Alliance. She says medical identity theft can have life or death consequences if a thief’s medical information is mixed up with yours. For example, your record may reflect the wrong blood type or not list allergies to medications you may have, and if you’re in an emergency and unable to communicate, that mis-information could lead to harm.

“When you go to get medical goods or services, you can be misdiagnosed or mistreated,” Patterson said. A 2015 study by the group found one in four people have their medical identity stolen by a friend or relative, and victims paid an average of $13,500 to resolve the crime, totaling $20 billion in 2014. The study also found medical ID theft is a quickly growing crime that affected 2.3 million Americans in 2014, up 21.7 percent from 2013.

Click here to read the full article and watch the newscast video.

Click here for Ronnie’s original story, March 2015.

December 17, 2015 By Vicky Nguyen and David Paredes, NBC Bay Area