|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 2009
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER615.532.8560 (OFFICE)615.202.0701 (CELL)
NINE PEOPLE CHARGED WITH TENNCARE DRUG FRAUD IN WAYNE COUNTY
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – TennCare fraud charges are lodged against nine people in Wayne County after an undercover operation involving the Office of Inspector (OIG), the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, Waynesboro Police Department and the Clifton Police Department. The charges involve people selling prescription drugs paid for with TennCare benefits.
“With the help of local police officers across the state as well as healthcare providers, we are winning the war against TennCare fraud,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “For us, that means locking up people who try to subsidize illegal narcotics trafficking with TennCare benefits,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said.
The 9 arrested are:
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years per charge in prison. District Attorney General Mike Bottoms 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 1,050 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."