News and Press Releases

Andrews Woman Sentenced in Health Care Fraud Case

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 21, 2014

Contact Person: Bill Watkins (864) 282-2100

Columbia, South Carolina ----- United States Attorney Bill Nettles stated that Queen Edwards Nesmith, age 53, of Andrews, South Carolina, was sentenced today in federal court in Charleston for Health Care Fraud, a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1346, and Aggravated Identity Theft, a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1028A.  Senior United States District Judge Sol Blatt Jr. of Charleston sentenced Nesmith to 24 months imprisonment on each charge, for a total of 48 months, and ordered her to pay approximately $411,000 in restitution.

Evidence presented at the change of plea hearing established that Nesmith formerly operated Highmarket Primary Care, a medical clinic in Georgetown, South Carolina, and sold the facility to another health care provider in 2007.  She continued to bill Medicare after she sold the clinic, receiving more than $400,000 for non-existent services supposedly rendered by a medical doctor who no longer worked at the clinic.  Nesmith used the identity of the doctor and real patients in carrying out the fraud.

The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General, and the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Eric Klumb.

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