|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 4, 2009
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER615.532.8560 (OFFICE)615.202.0701 (CELL)
CHEATHAM COUNTY MAN CHARGED WITH TENNCARE DRUG FRAUD
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Cheatham County man has been charged with three counts of TennCare fraud for selling prescription drugs which were paid for by TennCare.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Daniel Cooper, 25, of Pleasant View, which is the result of a joint effort with Sheriff’s officers in Cheatham and Robertson Counties.
Cooper is accused of selling the painkillers morphine and Hydrocodone the same day he filled the prescriptions, which he paid for with TennCare.
“The abuse of TennCare benefits may have been easy to get by with years ago, but those days are gone thanks to Governor Bredesen,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “Local police departments, sheriffs’ officers, pharmacies and other providers are all working together in the war against TennCare fraud.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General John W. Carney 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 1,000 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."