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Coffee Co. Woman Charged with TennCare Drug Fraud

Wednesday, January 28, 2015 | 12:00am

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Coffee county woman is charged with TennCare fraud for selling prescription drugs paid for by the state healthcare insurance program.

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Amanda D. Billings, 25, of Tullahoma, after a joint investigation with the Tullahoma Police Department.

Billings is charged in connection with using TennCare benefits to obtain a prescription for the painkiller Hydrocodone and later selling a portion to an undercover informant.

"Local police have been indispensable in helping us identify local drug trafficking that could involve the use of TennCare to finance inventory for the illegal activity," Inspector General Manny Tyndall said. "We are working with municipal and county police officers across the state, as they are clearly committed to eliminating prescription drug abuse, and we´re doing our part to stop abusers who are supporting this lifestyle with TennCare."

TennCare fraud is a Class E felony, carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General Craig Northcott is prosecuting.

The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $3 million being repaid to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $163.6 million for TennCare, according to latest figures.  To date, 2,271 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 Office of Inspector General and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."