|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 9, 2010
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A Warren County man is charged with TennCare fraud for selling prescription drugs paid for by TennCare.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) announced the arrest of James (Jamie) Otis Rainwater, 48, of McMinnville, after a joint investigation with the Warren County Sheriff’s Office.
Rainwater is charged with one count of TennCare fraud, one count of delivery of a Schedule IV controlled substance and two counts of delivery of a Schedule III controlled substance. He is accused of fraudulently obtaining a prescription for the addictive painkiller Hydrocodone, which was paid for by TennCare, and on two separate occasions delivering the painkiller Dihydrocodeinone and another occasion delivering the anti-anxiety drug Diazepam to other persons.
“Most of the time, when prescriptions are written for painkillers and other drugs with so-called ‘market value,’ there’s a legitimate purpose for one-time or short-term use,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “But when a person gets several prescriptions for controlled drugs with the intent to sell, and uses TennCare to pay for them, we are going to pursue the fullest punishment.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison, and delivery of a controlled substance Schedule IV and III are both Class D felonies, punishable by two to four years in prison. District Attorney General Lisa S. Zavogiannis 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 1,100 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."