McMinn County Woman Charged with TennCare Fraud
NASHVILLE, TN – A McMinn County woman is charged with TennCare fraud for using her allergy medication, which was paid for by TennCare, as a precursor in the manufacturing of methamphetamine.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Nicole Jack, 27, of Athens, after a joint investigation with the 10th Judicial Drug Task Force.
Jack was charged with one count of TennCare fraud for using her TennCare benefits to obtain Loratidine, an antihistamine, while planning to sell a portion for the manufacturing of meth.
“The unauthorized use and abuse of legitimate prescription drugs is a threat we take seriously,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “The state has targeted meth production with laws aimed at stopping this crime, and we won’t allow TennCare benefits to finance this activity.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony, carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General R. Steven Bibb 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, over 1,700 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."