FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, TN – A Henry County couple is charged with using the TennCare program to pay for a fraudulent prescription.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Michael Lonnie Burton, 57, and Phyllis Jane Burton, 41, both of Paris. The arrest is the result of a joint effort with the Paris Police Department.
Michael Burton is accused of presenting an altered prescription for the painkiller Morphine, which was written for his wife Phyllis, and using TennCare benefits to pay for the prescription. Both are charged with one count of TennCare fraud.
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General Hansel J. McCadams is prosecuting.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $3.5 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $173 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, 2,056 people have been charged with TennCare fraud.
Through the OIG Cash for Tips Program established by the Legislature, Tennesseans can get cash rewards for TennCare fraud tips that lead to convictions. Anyone can report suspected TennCare fraud by calling 1-800-433-3982 toll-free from anywhere in Tennessee, or log on to www.tn.gov/tnoig/ and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."