Two people are charged with TennCare fraud in separate indictments in Bradley and Monroe counties.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the following arrests:
Richard L. Brockman, 48, of Cleveland, charged with seven counts of doctor shopping for prescription drugs using TennCare benefits. He is also charged with seven counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud.
Robert Earl North, 35, of Vonroe, charged with TennCare fraud for using TennCare benefits to obtain the painkiller Oxycodone and later selling a portion of the drugs to a confidential informant. The Madisonville Police Department assisted in this investigation and arrest.
"We´re cracking down on people using TennCare to finance their drug habit or to provide a way for users to put the drugs on the street for other users to purchase illegally," Inspector General Manny Tyndall said. "Local police and providers are committed to helping us eliminate prescription drug abuse, especially when TennCare is involved."
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony, carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison per charge. District Attorney General Stephen D. Crump will be prosecuting both cases.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $3 million being repaid to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $163.6 million for TennCare, according to latest figures. To date, 2,276 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."