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Lincoln Co. Man Charged with TennCare Fraud

Tuesday, March 30, 2021 | 01:39pm
Carte

NASHVILLE  - A man from Lincoln County, Tennessee is charged with TennCare fraud in connection with allegedly reselling prescription pills obtained through the healthcare insurance program.

The Office of Inspector General (OIG), in a joint effort with the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office today announced the arrest of 69-year old Steven Wayne Carte of Petersburg. He’s charged with TennCare fraud, a class D felony, delivery of a Schedule II drug and selling a Schedule II drug, which are both class C felonies. The charges allege that Carte used TennCare to obtain the painkiller Oxycodone and then sold the pills to an undercover agent.

“We appreciate our partners at the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, as their work helps us stop abuse in the TennCare program,” Inspector General Kim Harmon said. “The OIG hopes to continue these strong established relationships to ensure that dangerous drugs are not being sold illegally in our communities, especially at the expense of public dollars.”

The case is being prosecuted by District Attorney General Robert J. Carter, of Lincoln County.

The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated more than 5,760 criminal cases leading to more than $10.8 million being repaid to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of more than $163.6 million for TennCare, according to latest figures. To date, 3,107 people have been charged with TennCare fraud.

The OIG’s most wanted for TennCare fraud are posted online at https://www.tn.gov/finance/fa-oig/fa-oig-most-wanted.html. Anyone with information about their whereabouts is urged to use the contact information on the page.  

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 or by logging on to www.tn.gov/oig/ and following the prompts that read “Report TennCare fraud.”