|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2009
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER615.532.8560 (OFFICE)615.202.0701 (CELL)
TWO NASHVILLE WOMEN CHARGED IN TENNCARE DRUG FRAUD CASE
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Two women from Davidson County are charged in connection with TennCare fraud involving prescription painkillers.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Lasondra R. Dowell, 24, and Tierra S. Young, 21, both of Nashville. The two appeared for a preliminary hearing today, after their arrest last week by the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department. Their cases have been bound over to the Davidson Grand Jury.
Dowell and Young were together when arrested September 10, after presenting a local pharmacy a forged prescription for the painkiller Oxycodone, attempting to use TennCare to pay for the prescription. They were each charged with identity theft, forgery, attempting to obtain a controlled substance by fraud and conspiracy to commit TennCare fraud.
The TennCare fraud charge against both could result in a two year sentence, if convicted. 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 1,000 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."