29 Charged with Health Care Fraud in Illinois


By Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD, IL (AP) - More than two dozen Illinois residents have been charged with health care fraud stemming from federal investigations.

U.S. attorneys James Lewis of the central district of Illinois and Stephen Wigginton of the southern district of Illinois announced the charges Thursday against 29 people. They are accused of abusing a health care program funded by Medicaid that pays for personal assistants to help recipients stay in their homes. The defendants allegedly submitted false claims for hours worked when they had other full-time jobs or the client was hospitalized.

Prosecutors say 13 defendants were issued summonses to appear in federal court in June. Two others have agreed to plead guilty.

Wigginton says his office indicted 14 people on the charge of health care program fraud. The charge carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

"Those charged in this wave of indictments include four defendants where the personal assistant or customer were in jail or prison during the times the services were supposed to be performed, six defendants where the personal assistant or the customer was in the hospital, three cases where the defendant was working full time jobs while the services were supposed to be performed and one case where the customer was dead and the personal assistant continued billing for months after the death of the customer," stated Wigginton in a release Thursday.

Those charged in the southern district are:

Connie D. Evans, Belleville, Illinois

Quincy O. Gamble, Cahokia, Illinois

Jody R. Wooters, Centralia, Illinois

Lakeshia W. White, Centreville, Illinois

Angel D. Jones, Collinsville, Illinois

Lawrence M. Thigpen, Collinsville, Illinois

Felicia M. Gibson, East St. Louis, Illinois

Beatrice L. Randall, East St. Louis, Illinois

Tamekia L. Hall, East St. Louis, Illinois

Maurice L. Burks, East St. Louis, Illinois

Maketa N. Davis, East St. Louis

Charlietta M. Lee, Marion, Illinois

Margaret R. Teriet, Mount Vernon, Illinois

Christopher W. Spivey, Olney, Illinois


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