Charges, indictments allegedly defrauding Medicaid


Special to Civitas Media



FRANKFORT — As part of a National Health Care Fraud Takedown, Attorney General Andy Beshear announced that his office helped to bring charges and secure indictments against four individuals and one company for allegedly defrauding Medicaid.

The National Health Care Fraud Takedown was the largest coordinated effort of its kind in the nation’s history, and was led by Medicare Fraud Strike Forces in 36 federal districts. The takedown included Beshear’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, similar units from 22 other states, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation.

“As attorney general, I am committed to holding any individual or company that defrauds taxpayers and Medicaid accountable,” Beshear said. “This national takedown is a critical step to stop those who defraud the people government serves, including our most vulnerable senior citizens and children.”

The three indictments obtained by Beshear’s office were connected to a scheme to defraud the Kentucky Medical Assistance Program in Hardin County.

Natasha A. Burgen, 31, is alleged to have billed Medicaid for services she did not provide and was indicted by a Hardin County grand jury on two counts: devising or engaging in a scheme to defraud the Kentucky Medical Assistance Program of $300 or more, a Class D felony, and; theft by unlawfully taking of property valued at $500 or more, Class D felony. If convicted, Burgen faces a potential sentence of one to 10 years in prison.

Tarsha A. Jenkins, 42, is alleged to have billed Medicaid for services she did not provide. Jenkins was indicted by a Hardin County grand jury, on two counts: devising or engaging in a scheme to defraud the Kentucky Medical Assistance Program of $300 or more, a Class D felony, and; theft by unlawfully taking of property valued at $10,000 or more, Class C felony. If convicted, Jenkins could face a potential sentence of one to 15 years in prison.

Annie M. Jenkins, 66, is alleged to have signed off and approved the time Tarsha A. Jenkins and Natasha A. Burgen claimed to have been working and billing for Medicaid services they did not provide. Jenkins was indicted by a Hardin County grand jury, on three counts: devising or engaging in a scheme to defraud the Kentucky Medical Assistance Program of $300 or more, a Class D felony; theft by unlawfully taking of property valued at $500 or more, a Class D felony, and; theft by unlawfully taking of property valued at $10,000 or more, a Class C felony. If convicted, Jenkins could face a potential sentence of one to 20 years in prison.

Burgen, Tarsha Jenkins and Annie Jenkins were arraigned in Hardin Circuit Court and a pre-trial hearing is scheduled for Aug. 9, 2016. This case was investigated by the Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse and the Cabinet for Health and Family Service’s Office of the Inspector General.

Investigators and assistant attorneys general from Beshear’s Office also investigated two additional providers, which resulted in indictments of a McCracken County physician, Sean P. McDonald, 46, and MED 1st of Evansville P.C., located in Evansville, Indiana. MED 1st of Evansville, P.C., is alleged to have knowingly and willfully directed staff members to provide medically unnecessary treatments to patients traveling from Kentucky and fraudulently billed health care benefit programs for the services.

Both indictments were presented by the Western District of Kentucky United States Attorney’s Office.

An indictment is merely a charge, and all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

One of the core missions of Beshear’s office is to protect Kentucky families from scams, fraud and abuse. Kentuckians are urged to report allegations of Medicaid fraud or abuse to the Attorney General’s Office 24-hour tip line, 877-ABUSE-TIP.

Since taking office in January, Attorney General Andy Beshear has recovered more than $8 million to the state through Medicaid provider fraud recoveries.

Special to Civitas Media

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