Saturday, August 25, 2012

Eastern Kentucky Residents Face Fraud Charges

A federal grand jury has indicted 14 eastern Kentucky residents with defrauding Social Security and Medicaid out of more than $1 million. Patty Justice, Sasha DeHart and Alice Cole, all of Pike County, are among those indicted. Cole is charged with fraudulent acts, health care fraud and public money property or records, all felony charges. Justice has been indicted on charges of theft of government property and Social Security fraud and is accused of claiming disability benefits in the amount of $65,088 from July 2002 through April 2011. DeHart  is charged with fraudulent acts, health care fraud and public money property or records, all felony charges. When Dehart applied for SSI benefits in April 2007, she failed to disclose income, assets and living expenses she shared with her husband. The indictment states that
Dehart concealed the financial support she received from her husband. She was over paid $37,872.57.

Prosecutors believe Francis Terry, of McCreary County, concealed the fact she lived with her husband while improperly receiving more than $200,000 in Supplemental Security Income and Medicaid payments. Albert Terry was indicted with his wife. Henrietta Winchester, also of McCreary County, was charged with illegally receiving more than $120,000 in benefits by failing to disclose that she lived with, and received support from, her husband Denver. The two also were charged with lying to federal employees. Others charged by the grand jury are Novella Lawson, and Earl and Rebecca Johnson, of Whitley County, Lula Lewis, of Leslie County, Herman Caldwell, of Bell County, Frank Holland, of Perry County, and Sarah Binder, of Laurel County. The Johnsons allegedly received more than $73,000 in survivor benefits for a grandchild in their care but spent the money on themselves. Caldwell was charged with receiving more than $104,000 in federal disability payments even though he had a job. The health care fraud and theft charges carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. Social Security fraud and lying charges carry a top sentence of five years.