Five Tennessee Health Care Executives Charged In $2.5 Million Dollar Kickback Scheme
An 11-count indictment was unsealed yesterday, charging five Tennessee health care executives with one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States and violate the Anti-Kickback Statute and several substantive counts of violating the Anti-Kickback Statute, announced U.S. Attorney Don Cochran for the Middle District of Tennessee.
Those charged are:
Brenda Montgomery, 70, of Camden, Tenn.;
Beau Jones, 50, of Loudon, Tenn.;
Sarah Dacus, 36; Greg Lawson, 42; and Josh Wiley, 35, all of Knoxville, Tenn.
The charges stem from a multi-level kickback scheme led and financed by Brenda Montgomery and the durable medical equipment (DME) company she owned and operated, CCC Medical, Inc. (CCC). Jones, Lawson, Wiley, and Dacus were arrested yesterday as part of a national healthcare fraud takedown. Montgomery, who is currently facing other federal charges connected to a previous $4.6 million dollar Medicare kickback scheme, must appear in the Middle District of Tennessee to be arraigned on the new case.
According to the indictment, Beau Jones, in his role as a sales representative for a large national DME manufacturer, recruited individuals in a position to make referrals of Medicare DME orders to CCC. The indictment alleges that in exchange for the referrals, he received kickbacks in excess of $400,000.
The indictment further alleges that Greg Lawson and Josh Wiley, sales representatives of the same company that employed Jones, were among the individuals recruited by Jones. The indictment alleges that Lawson received over $250,000 in kickbacks and Wiley received over $93,000 in kickbacks for DME referrals and orders to CCC.
According to other allegations in the indictment, Lawson recruited Sarah Dacus, a sales representative of a large international medical device manufacturer, and Dacus received kickbacks and bribes in excess of $52,000 for sending DME orders and referrals to CCC.
Finally, the indictment alleges that, from in or around January 2012 until in or around December 2017, Montgomery paid Jones, Lawson, Wiley, Dacus and other co-conspirators over $1 million in illegal kickbacks; billed Medicare for over $2.5 million in tainted DME claims; and collected in excess of $1.2 million in reimbursement for those claims.
The defendants face up to five years in federal prison on each charge as well as substantial monetary fines and penalties.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services - Office of Inspector General; the Defense Criminal Investigative Service; and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation - Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. Assistant United States Attorney Ryan R. Raybould of the Middle District of Tennessee and Trial Attorney Anthony Burba from the DOJ’s Fraud Section are prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.
An indictment is merely an accusation and is not evidence of guilt. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.
This enforcement action is part of a nationwide health care fraud initiative of the Department of Justice being announced today by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.