|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FRIDAY, JANUARY 21, 2011
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – Two men in White County are charged with TennCare drug fraud – both for the second time each.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrests of Benny Craig, 55, of Doyle and Daniel Burgess, 21, of Sparta. These arrests are the result of a joint effort with the White County Sheriff’s Office.
Both Craig and Burgess were arrested on indictments alleging they each in separate incidents fraudulently obtained a controlled substance paid for by TennCare, while planning to sell a portion of the prescription drugs.
Craig was last arrested for TennCare fraud in late November in Warren County, where he was accused of obtaining medical benefits he was not entitled to. Burgess was arrested in December of last year in Warren County and charged with obtaining TennCare medical benefits he was not entitled to.
“The selling of TennCare prescription drugs is against the law,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “Enrollees who participate in selling drugs paid for by TennCare – and those who buy them – should understand this is a serious crime we intend to prosecute.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General Randall A. York is prosecuting.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $2.5 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $171 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, over 1,300 people have been charged with TennCare fraud.
Through the OIG Cash for Tips Program established by the Legislature, Tennesseans can get cash rewards for TennCare fraud tips that lead to convictions. Anyone can report suspected TennCare fraud by calling 1-800-433-3982 toll-free from anywhere in Tennessee, or log on to www.tn.gov/tnoig and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."