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White collar crimes: Indictment alleges Medicaid fraud

Medicaid fraud forms the basis of many federal criminal cases filed each year, including in Michigan. The current opioid epidemic has led to many allegations of white collar crimes, including those involving a former owner of a state-licensed drug and alcohol rehabilitation center in another state. The 38-year-old man was recently indicted in federal court on 60 counts for alleged indiscriminate handing out of opioids and then filing fraudulent Medicaid claims.

Along with five others, this man is accused of conspiracy and committing health care fraud, distributing controlled substances, money laundering and several other charges. Court documents indicate that the Medicaid claims this defendant filed and received totaled $31 million. Reportedly, one of the other defendants is the man's ex-wife who was reportedly the billing coordinator of the center and handled the medical records.

Of the other four defendants, two were in charge of running the facility's day-to-day operations, and two were state-licensed physicians at the center. Among the allegations against the former owner is one that claims he used the Drug Enforcement Administration registration of one of the doctors for dispensing over 3,000 Suboxone doses -- an opioid used in the treatment of withdrawal symptoms. It's also alleged that he used the DEA registration of a former doctor after that person's resignation.

This case is scheduled for a jury trial in May. Anyone in Michigan who faces charges for alleged white collar crimes will likely require the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney to protect his or her rights and pursue the most favorable result possible in court. Anyone who is indicted, whether at the state or federal level, remains innocent in the eyes of the law until, and only if, the prosecution can prove guilt in court and beyond a reasonable doubt.

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