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Medicaid scam lands Milwaukee nurse in hot water

A Milwaukee nurse has been convicted of serious charges related to Medicaid fraud after being found guilty by a jury following a trial that only lasted five days. This fraud conviction could very well lead to a six-year prison sentence when she is sentenced on May 16.

The 50-year-old nurse allegedly began the fraudulent activities back in June 2010, when a parent interviewed her for a job taking care of a young girl with health care needs that had to be attended to at home. The nurse wasn't hired, but authorities alleged that she went on to charge a total of $32,330.41 to Wisconsin's Medicaid program by claiming that she was taking care of the girl.

The nurse was charged and convicted of both theft and Medicaid fraud. In addition to the possible six-year prison sentence that she faces related to the two charges, the nurse may also face fines upwards of $35,000. The supposed fraud took place between the months of June 2010 and April 2011, and 136 days of care were allegedly charged to the Medicaid program during this time. The Wisconsin Department of Justice's Elder Abuse Unit and Wisconsin's Medicaid Fraud Control group investigated the allegations and prosecuted the crime.

Medicaid fraud is a serious charge that often pits unsuspecting and unprepared defendants against the power of the state. As was the case with the now convicted nurse, the possible repercussions of being found guilty of the crime are often detrimental and can even be increased if the prosecution chooses to tack on additional charges. A criminal defense attorney may be able to help someone accused of medicaid fraud or other white collar crimes secure the best possible outcome for his or her situation.

Source: Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee nurse convicted of Medicaid fraud over phantom home health care ," Bruce Vielmetti, March 11, 2013

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