Crime

They billed Medicaid for $4 million in fraudulent claims. Now they could go to prison.

Two health-care workers from Durham have pleaded guilty on charges related to Medicaid fraud and tax evasion.

Haydn Thomas and Catinia Farrington, both 44, pleaded guilty Thursday, according to a U.S. Department of Justice news release.

Thomas pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement relating to health care matters and one count of tax evasion.

Farrington pleaded guilty to one count of health care fraud conspiracy and one count of tax evasion.

Farrington owned Durham County Mental Health and Behavioral Health Services, LLC in Durham. From 2011 to 2015, the company submitted thousands of false claims, and was paid by Medicaid approximately $4 million for mental health services it did not provide, investigators said.

During that same period, Thomas worked as an oral surgeon’s practice manager and gave Farrington a dental patient’s name and Medicaid number, which was then used by him to submit fraudulent claims, according to the release.

They diverted millions of dollars from the business for their own use and evaded income taxes, investigators said.

Farrington faces up to 10 years in prison for conspiracy to commit health care fraud and five years in prison for tax evasion. Farrington will be sentenced Feb. 15, 2019.

Thomas faces five years in prison for making a false statement relating to health care matters and five years in prison for tax evasion. Thomas will be sentenced Feb. 21, 2019.

They also face a period of supervised release, restitution and monetary penalties.

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