|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, JULY 7, 2010
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – A Rutherford County woman is charged for a second time in Davidson County with unlawful use of another person’s identity in order to use TennCare to pay for fraudulent prescriptions.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Sarah Thomason, 23, of Murfreesboro. Thomason’s arrest was assisted by the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office and the Nashville Metropolitan Police Department.
Thomason was indicted by a Davidson County Grand Jury on three counts of TennCare fraud and one count of theft of services.
Thomason’s first arrest occurred a month ago when she was charged with twenty-two counts of TennCare fraud, twenty-two counts of theft of identity and seventeen counts of prescription fraud. Thomason allegedly used the personal identifying information of a TennCare enrollee to obtain medical services and gained possession of the painkiller Hydrocodone.
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony, carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison per charge. Theft of Services is a Class D felony that carries a sentence of up to four years in prison per charge. District Attorney General Victor S. Johnson, III 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 1,240 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."